By the window, two men alongside, strangers, fellow travellers, the dam was ready to burst.
I want to go home.
This is going to be too hard.
As the screen shows us flying over Germany, Luxembourg, the Channel then England, I want to scream - turn around, go back, I am too far away from home.
An uncomfortable hour, busyness of customs, check in, freshening up and finding a beer … my bag is not lost; I am allowed into the UK, no hitch, no excess luggage fee, friendly check in assistant (and I remember the friendly check in assistant of six years ago here in Birmingham airport, who loved us Aussies, fell apart when I said no worries and lost it completely when my friend handed over her passport - your name is Kylie?! Some Brits really love us Aussies. Thanks Neighbours and Home and Away, you're good for something, at least) … the satisfying cchhh of the beer opening and it is cold; more friendly people, and, for now, I am happy to go the final stage of this journey north, to the city I'll call home from now until who knows when.
I am OK. I am happy again.
But I don't expect the turbulence is over quite yet.