Friday, 30 December 2011

Travel isn’t easy

After 4 days back in the UK I was in immense pain with my neck and shoulder, same thing happened after the UK trip in August. What causes it to flare up like this? I was injured over 15 years ago and lived in constant pain, medication and numerous treatments from the local hospital; I’d have a few good days at the most. Since moving here the pain has gone. No work, less driving, no stressing myself out trying to fit everyone and everything into our busy lives and the heat has helped tremendously.
But 2x8 hour flights, dragging suitcases, bed hopping and driving followed by 2x8 hour flights and I’m buggered and it’s going to take a while to recover.
Ok I’m now stress free, living in South Africa, no work, studies, and only 2 kids instead of 5, no constant running around for various and many activities. I swim everyday and I enjoy cooking for and looking after my family as a role now rather than a chore.
Well I lie slightly, I’m stressed after nearly a year of doing things on my own in regards to ‘how to live here’ I’m struggling to resolve issues with banks etc in the UK and I’m stressed at feeling undervalued in the job market which has hindered my ability to function properly in this country without constant ‘permission’ from hubby to set household accounts up. But the task of renewing things this year is less daunting as I know how and where to get these things done at least.
But 3 weeks in the UK and my stress levels were sky high. Why? Trying to accommodate everyone. I take too much on, try to do too much, OK I’ll leave YOU out from my visit...oh you didn’t mean that did you?
I found UK driving stressful, most of my trips were at the end of the day in the dark, I’d forgotten how dark it was, street lights run out when you leave the town and many major roads don’t have them either, long journeys after a busy day. I struggled with headaches, tired eyes and stiff neck and back. It’s a chore I haven’t missed. I drive here, but apart from a day trip, its short local visits and I rarely drive at night here.
Each place I visited fed me, wanted to know about our ‘exciting’ lives in South Africa, they obviously don’t read my blog then, it’s mundane, it’s routine, I didn’t object but I found it different to inject something new into it and I tired of saying the same things.
I want/need to connect to the internet, use the phone, speak to hubby, followed by a long soak in the bath and a steaming mug of tea, chill in my pjs after a long day and a comfy bed, but that would be rude so I keep on going.
The there is the shopping and gifts, which to my dismay aren’t going to fit in the suitcases (they did in the end, but left little room for me to buy things) I’d forgotten how unfriendly the UK was, it was crowded, people were rude, pushing and shoving, tutting and complaining about the queues, banging into you with their shopping bags without so much as a sorry or a sideward’s glance.
I wanted/needed light and space. The UK was dark, I know it was winter but on one day I glanced at my watch thinking it was nearly 5pm but it was only 1.30pm, in the afternoon.
I missed my family and friends, but I didn’t miss my old lifestyle, I was ready to go home, I just needed some space.

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