Love is like a butterfly

You are too big to miss for a day, too loud, too busy, too many words on the end of the phone. I couldn’t feel you in a day. But over many days?

Over many days, the full impact slowly rams me down to the ground and I’ve been left winded, ribs caved in, bruises blossoming on my chest like defiant lavender.

Over many days I replay summer afternoons, lost slippers. I remember the answer to the Sunday crossword, the one that had us chewing our pens and sharing a biscuit – 6 down: artichoke. I tell other people about that time you fell off your chair, and we laugh together. My face feels tight.

Over many days a small crystal tear forms in the back of my eye. It is like a shard of glass, nestled in deep, and I can’t seem to cry it out. I carry it with me like a hidden dagger, only sometimes it shows itself. In the silence, in the grey days, it pokes free and glints back at me in the mirror.

Today is one of those days. Today you have consumed the sky and blacked out the sun, filled the inverted blue cup with criss-crossed fairy lights and wispy lace scarves.

I know this won’t be the only day, I know you will spill out into a thousand others and knock me senseless again.

I know I will wake up and think of your curled fingers waving through the air, conducting a silent orchestra; I know I will seek out breakfast and find myself singing Dolly Parton with you as you make a cup of tea.

And I know, that as I go to hang up the phone, I will hear your voice on the other end calling out ‘Goodbye, goodbye, goodbye.’

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Infinite

Yesterday, the inspiring Zach Sobiech passed away.

Here is his story.

His family has requested that anyone who is interested in helping change the fate for future children like Zach  donate to the research fund set up on his behalf.

“All I wanna be remembered as is the kid that went down fighting, and didn’t really lose.”

A ‘Farewell Weekend’ of misty lakes, muddy hikes and public smooching

I have had a truly fabulous weekend.

To ease the transition of me moving back to university and washing my own underwear, and of my family adjusting back to a much quieter house, my mum and sister followed me and my boyfriend home, and stayed overnight.

And strangely enough, it turned out to be quite the adventure.

* * *

Saturday morning arrived and panic ensued. My suitcase wasn’t packed, my room was a mess, and I was stubbornly determined to cook everybody pancakes for breakfast, whether they wanted them or not.

…In retrospect, not the best start to the day.

So I mastered the art of multi-tasking; showering whilst brushing my teeth, drying my hair while throwing clothes haphazardly into bags, shoving my feet into a pair of bright yellow wellies with one hand and flipping pancakes with the other. Against all odds, we made it into the car before nightfall.

Our first stop of the day was Burrator Reservoir on Dartmoor. However, in true Dartmoor style, the weather was awful, with thick mists and drizzling rain making the tiny lanes positively terrifying to drive along. It didn’t help that we were exchanging stories of serial killers and monsters…

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Unfortunately, once we DID find it, the mists had descended to such an extent that we could barely see a thing. Let me demonstrate.

On a good day, Burrator Reservoir looks like this:

by UPSU

by UPSU

Author: Nilfanion

Author: Nilfanion

But all we could see was this:

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Disappointing though this was, we were so relieved at having found it after all that exhausting over-reacting to shadowy silhouettes of trees, that we celebrated our discovery with a picnic of cold pizza and blueberry muffins…in the car of course.

We relaxed that evening with a wonderful meal in the local pub, spending hours chatting over food and drinks, and cramming dessert into our overly stuffed bellies. The short distance from the restaurant to the car seemed extraordinarily long as we waddled across the car park, cursing the goodness of the Belgian waffle.

footpathgate01abigThe next morning, hungry again, we headed to Plymbridge Woods for another picnic and a walk by the river. With my family, you can never just head out for a simple stroll, it always becomes a major hiking experience, and this was no exception. We followed the river up to a weir, strolled across an old railway bridge, clambered up a large muddy hills, hitched ourselves over styles, and smooched our way through kissing gates.

* * *

So, at the beginning of this new week, I’m looking forward to the next adventure and I am beyond content. I’ve had a whole weekend of adventure and discovery, hikes and (looking back on it) lots of food. And all of this, surrounded by the people I love the most in the world.149494_10201168364635909_324880755_n

We were dropped off Sunday evening with wind chaffed cheeks, sore feet and sadness in the air as we waved goodbye to the retreating car.

But boy, what a fantastic farewell weekend it was.

(I even mastered the art of camouflage.)

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‘The Trip of a Lifetime’ – A Perfectionist’s Goodbye (Part 4)

I’ve found it incredibly hard to even begin writing the last blog of this series and it’s taken me a while to understand why.

When it comes to life; when it comes to writing; when it comes to love…I am a perfectionist. I can’t recount a romantic scenario to my friends unless I know the exact words that would do it justice. I can’t start a written project if I’m not in the right mood because that would taint the beauty of it. I can’t fall in love twice because no one would ever come close to resembling the man I am in love with today.

I am a perfectionist.

* * *

Sitting in a fiercely air-conditioned airport at 2am waiting for our flight, I knew from my downturned mouth and pathetically watery eyes that Pefkos was a place we would cherish. It was our first big ‘getaway’, our first adventure of the wider world together. We learnt things about each other that we were previously unaware of and STILL loved in spite of them. And – most importantly to me – we made a promise to each other that we will never break.

It was a difficult little town to leave behind. With all of its hidden coves, gigantic bottles of wine and sugar cube cities just over the next hill top, Pefkos never ceased to be breath taking. Nothing was too overwhelming there; there weren’t too many tourists or larger than life Grecian characters that intimidated you whilst you attempted to ignore the stray cats twirling round your legs, desperate for a scrap of your dinner. When thirsty, you’d find your cure in the nearest cocktail bar (or, in my rather mature case, the local brand of lemonade). As we bad our final goodbye to the beach and turned towards home, I felt the beauty of the trip ebbing away.

There was nothing stopping you from feeling at home and everything stopping you from wanting to leave.

* * *

Some holidays pass in a blur: a splash in the pool here, a bottle of wine there…and some stay with you. Pefkos has now, weeks later, become like a little sun that our world revolves around-now we find ourselves determining the date by counting forward from the day we arrived back in England and comparing each bite of food to the cuisine we sampled abroad, driving our friends and family mad.

When all is said and done, it felt like our adventure had a sprinkling of that magic called Life that we all somehow manage to pass up on in our everyday routines. The memories we now have gleam that much brighter upon recollection in the dreary British summer and the touch of a hand or a kiss at sunset feels that much more poignant now the feeling of sand beneath our feet has faded away.

Stepping on to the outbound plane that (early) morning felt like the end of a perfect journey, the finality of a ‘Trip of a Lifetime’ returning to everyday schedule – but I shouldn’t have felt sadness.

We still have such a long way to go.