Wednesday, 27 August 2014

The Archeology of Luggage

Pretty images. Whimsy and idle. I spy it as the train whips past red brick villages, and fog rolling fields sometimes speckled with horses. Trees line the tracks, leaning, thin and leafy in the manner I know of from Victoria. Even the stations are small; speckled in old benches and overhangs, all brick and stone and wood. The most garish colours come from the train's bright fluorescent lights and plasticky or metal innards and skin. Oh and the mouldy industry buildings sinking rot into the outskirts. Otherwise it is quiet. The hills seem to go on forever.

These iconic buses are regular public transport. Not just tourist buses as I always assumed.
It seems perfect now, but just some hours earlier, after arriving at the station two hours in advance out of fear of getting lost or hung up somewhere, especially with what I carry, an announcement airs, explaining a cancelled train. A tree has fallen over the line and other ways of travel will need to be sorted. I get up around then as it is 20 minutes to for when my own train leaves and I don't see mine up yet, though there is one leaving for Cambridge right then, so I figure I could see if I could catch that one. Oh. Wait. Delayed it suddenly reads. Then, seconds later. Cancelled. Also.

I start worrying as I am catching a train to Cambridge. Yep. All trains to Cambridge are cancelled thanks to a tree falling over the line. But, I can still catch a train out of Kings Cross, according to an information person and along the way back to the Tube I find a group also hurrying to Kings Cross due to the same reasons. They agree to stick with me, except when I get hung up at stairs. My nemesis, mostly due to all the luggage and that pesky thing called weight. I get help, once. But mostly people help once, feel the weight, and then go running. People don't like weighty or difficult things. I can agree. They do add unnecessary stress.

So anyway, somehow I manage my way over, with little help. Twice to be exact, in the end. Those people who proclaimed to stick with me, ditched me at one point, finally, and I find myself running, again, to catch a train to Cambridge, leaving Kings Cross nearly the same time as my original was meant too. No idea how the rest of the journey will fare, especially as out here, among fog and cobbled streets and stairs up and down, will I manage? Well, I do have past experience backing me. I have managed thus far. I will continue to do so. However, it does make me dearly want to have a home base where I can drop things and travel out of. Getting UK citizenship is high on my mind. I wonder if I got a job with the agency, could use them to work toward a citizenship? I would like that. This corner of the world is so much closer to my heart and my center of travel and exploration. All I need now is a base and I can drop the excess and depart. Then again, all these musings could just me be feeling tired, hot and wondering why I couldn't be the sort of person who can travel the world on a backpack?

Especially as there is much to be said about even having excess weight in the first place. Particularly of just shoving it into corners. Well, once I get settled I should take stock of what is most important to me. Clothes? Glasses? Extra bottles of shampoo which will get me by for a month or two? Notebooks with my writing in it? Games? Tablet? PS3? Perhaps. One might say I am totally going overboard with what I brought (particularly on the electronics front) and that a more sensible person would simply purchase everything over here. But then, I already have the things, why buy more? I mean, I will have to purchase many things, a phone, for example, since I thought it might be easier and cheaper than getting my own unlocked and a new SIM card for it. Not so. Not at all. In order to get a phone here, you need one, a bank account (namely, a bank card) and two, a permanent residence that matches your bank information. It's things like that you never bat an eye toward when living in your home country.

Now, well, I am cherishing the bits I have from home. It makes me smile a little every morning to use hygiene products that have labels in French and English and to slip on a one of the many warm sweaters from home, in hopes there might still be a bit of cat fur on them.

If you were moving to a new country for two years, and very potentially moving about even that country itself, what would you bring with you?

Bringing bits everywhere.

1 comment:

  1. Moony, I like that part you wrote: "People don't like weighty or difficult things." Also, it was very interesting that your fellow travelers abandoned you when they realized the luggage you carriage. Isn't that true in life? If they even knew how graceful you travel, they would have hung in there with you. Another great post and thanks for the picture feels as if I'm there too but I I'd like to think I had only a backpack with me, ha...who am I are doing brillantly!