The Heart Warbles When It’s Home

I am back in Bayonne. Back home. Though really, so many homes have been left behind. The heart throbbed yesterday when I had a layover at Heathrow. The hum of the familiar is intoxicating.

Now, mizzle. The lavender grey stretch of the Hudson. The park with its army of trees stripped clean of leaves, but oh wait, a few golden leaves cling to one. A boy in black waits at the bus stop holding on patiently to his black umbrella, buffeted by the wind. It must be freezing outside (yes, I am guilty of putting a lead photo from a few months ago).

It is as warm inside. The lemon verbena candle burns quietly and the room smells citrus. Cosy. Behind me Adi clacks away on his computer, and then there is this, me clacking away on Bertie. Serenity. I am home.

I woke up in the middle of the early morning hours. An unsettling sense of being suspended in some other space. Where was I? It took some time for my discombobulated mind to soak in the fact that I was in our own room. Heavens, it was bliss. Then I looked at Adi’s peacefully snuggled form, cuddled up, and rejoiced. To be back where you belong. Is there any feeling as good as that?

So please, no more air travel anywhere, at least for some time. This 20-hour journey has scrambled my brains. The rigmarole of shedding clothes and shoes at security, putting them back on, repeating it all over again, endless eating on the flight, lack of enough water, snacking upon Marmite popcorn (egad), reading Jazz-age tales from Fitzgerald, then nodding vigorously at the wisdom of Mark Manson and snickering at his sense of humour, watching movies and TV shows, listening to music wondering about when it should all end, insufferably long queues at immigration at JFK Airport, the people here who insist on referring to landing cards as receipts.Β I am done.

So you know what to do when you want to punish someone or take wholesome revenge (you sweet human). Just put that someone on a long-haul flight.

Peace out.



Published by

Arundhati Basu

The great affair in my life is to travel. I count myself immensely fortunate that my partner shares this passion. We are a team that likes to spend time planning and plotting out places to go. Destination check, flights check, accommodation check, cheesy grins check. Off we go.

66 thoughts on “The Heart Warbles When It’s Home

    1. Now that is a wholesome thought. The need for pain in life πŸ™‚ The most I can handle is 8 hours but well we have chosen to live so far away that now these flights have to be chalked into our plans. Sigh.

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  1. Welcome back! I know exactly what you mean about long haul travel, a modern form of torture where every airport has its own variation on the rules.

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  2. Once I had to go on a coach for 24 hours (from England to Austria) and it was pretty much as bad as you expect – although, fun in a way, because everyone on that trip was in it together, and the end destination was entirely worth it. Hope you enjoy your time at home and manage to settle back into a peaceful routine! Xx

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    1. Whoa that sounds crazy, Maria, but you are right it sounds like you would have made friends and had fun on the way. The views would have been worth it too. I will say this that I am willing to take coach travel over plane just because of the hassles associated with flying. And hey, jet lag is making me wake up at 5am so I am reaping at least some benefits πŸ˜› xx

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      1. I’m good thanks for asking! Holidays happened and travels and kids going back to school πŸ™‚ Everything’s settled once again and I get some time now to read the wonderful posts in WordPress. I’ve got a lot of backlog, I have yet to read your last 3 or 4 posts!

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  3. I love when I get there. The flight is what I dread. I’ve been enjoying my “stay-cations”. I’m discovering places around my home and trying new places to eat and shop and walk. Welcome home! πŸ™‚

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  4. Oh, it’s always just so expectedly heavenly to be back home. It took me forever to regain my sense of time and space after an awful 30 hours of flights and layovers. I had never realized just how big the world was until them. You keep on resting until you’re ready to come back to the world. Lemon verbena and your own warm blankets are something to be thankful for.

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    1. Twenty hours and I am done for. After 30 hours I fear my mind would not be mine any more. So I believe that this demands a deep Japanese bow.
      I do not want to leave home for a long, long time now, my sweet! I am tucked into my quilt as I write and my senses are saturated with the sensuousness of these perfumed candles – ’tis sublime. xx


  5. It is a very long flight indeed. The last time we did it was with two young kids… still haven’t conjured up the courage to go back with 3! Glad you are home safe and sound. xx

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    1. Thank you Annika, we are giving ourselves a few months of respite before we repeat it again at the end of the year. I am shuddering already! Three tots and such a marathon of a flight… sounds like a most trying combination. xx

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  6. I love the feeling of being back home. I totally relate with the long flight, I fly from New Zealand to England and the flying itself takes 24 hours! Glad you arrived back safely and hope the jetlag wasn’t too bad. x

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    1. Hello Anya, thank you. To fly from New Zealand and Australia to any place must take ages. I have always wondered how travellers from your part of the world brave backpacking after such mind-numbing hours in the air. But that said, I do want to brave it and experience the beauty of both countries. They are gems. x

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      1. I must say, I found it quite challanging the first time we flew from New Zealand to England but I guess you just get use to it. You should visit New Zealand if you have the chance, definitely worth the long flight! x

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  7. “The park with its army of trees stripped clean of leaves, but oh wait, a few golden leaves cling to one.” Poetic!

    I loved the warm tone of familiarity in this piece, Dippy-Dotty Girl! I chuckled, too, about the travails of long air travel. I didn’t go on as long a flight as you, but a couple of weekends ago I visited a graduate school friend in Boston (brr!) for a few days. For the first time in many years I took an overnight flight (“red-eye”), for convenience of schedule, and wow, even though it was only a 6-hour flight, that last hour (about 3:00 am my home time) was not an experience I’d want to repeat; for some reason one of those killer headaches came on, along with the nausea it sometimes brings (even though I was staying hydrated, drinking water), and I had already taken my limit of ibuprofen, so could only tough it out. Glad to have landed, got some sleep, and a good visit with my friend, and returned home safely, but like you, not in a hurry to travel long distances soon.

    Loved all the comfort descriptions in your post! xx

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    1. Thank you Theresa, you are ever so generous with your words. I appreciate it. Red-eye flights are monstrous in that they make you walk around like a zombie for at least the day that you take them. Your experience does sound painful. Flying is just not about the flight, is it now? It is about the trappings. Leaving home, ploughing through traffic, getting to the airport, then the endless drama of abiding by rules and regulations at the airport…Sigh.
      I believe that we both deserve home now πŸ™‚ xx

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      1. Yes, we do deserve home now, what a lovely way to say it! After reading your post I decided not to feel guilty about wanting to stay home and stay cozy for a while. I did get to see some wonderful art at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, that inspired me, and which I would not have seen if I didn’t go there. – e.g., Georgia O’Keefe huge flower paintings, Picasso cubisms, Mark Rothko intense monocolor canvases, and my favorite, a black-and-white Japanese abstract+calligraphy inspired exhibit. πŸ™‚ Plus, eating a lovely brunch at a museum restaurant while listening to a jazz combo play music. Ah. Was worth it that day! πŸ™‚

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