London Round Two
The plane ride was uneventful, thank goodness something was normal. Due to the circumstances at hand, I decided read "The Tao of Poo: Legend of Li Chang." by Dirk McFergus. Dirk translated Li Chang's writing from an ancient roll of parchment; this parchment resembled toilet paper. The Tao of Poo is the story of Li Chang, a student of sewage for Taoist Master Lao Tzu. The book focuses solely on Taoist Master Lao Tzu crap, and the lessons he taught Li Chang with it. It was totally spiritual crap, and I could relate. Crap happens, it's what you do and learn from it that matters. Good Book.
Once we had landed, I was asked to stay seated and wait until all the passengers had left before the steward called the English Border Control to pick me up. "They are not sending anyone to escort you, here is your paperwork and there is a officer waiting for you in passport control."
I walked past the long line or queue to the last passport agent. He looked at my paperwork and e-mail confirmation of my embassy appointment and called for backup. A gentleman brought him a temporary form for me to fill out. Once all the questions were filled out he asked about my aunt and uncle; where they were from and how long they had been in the London. I was happy to answer the questions as they were all in English, I understood English and I knew the answers :). Once I was finished with the passport process I danced my way out the door to see the most beautiful people in the world, my aunt and uncle. They were waiting for me and when my uncle lifted me off the ground with his big hug, I knew everything would be ok.
Once we arrived at my family's house, I placed my stuff in the spare bedroom upstairs. To my surprise uncle Bodo had made me an amazing Americano, as a pre-treat to dinner. Dinner started with a pint, caramelized onions with goat cheese and, a few large sausages. The meal ended with another Americano, and some English biscuits in the living room. My uncle showed me his new High Tech monitor and sound system that would make any techie jealous, while my aunt and I decided what we were going to do with the extra time we had. It was nice to see my aunt happy, she was so happy she started singing "Milk Milk Lemonade" to my uncle. At this point I was thinking her medication must have taken effect; then she pulled up this video. It was the hardest I have laughed in a long time. It was nice to be back in London, with my family.
Saturday May 30th arrived early; Batman's shadow in the window was a reassuring sight as I ran down the stairs to make my own Americano. This was the beginning of a new adventure in coffee making. Uncle Bodo showed me how to use the machine the night before, but forgot to explain a few of it's quirks. My first try at making coffee ended up with water. The machine rinses after sleep mode, and I was glad my cup was there. Once the machine was ready, I got two a shot espresso and filled the rest of my cup with steaming how water from another machine. Soon everyone else was up, and my aunt was in full swing mom mode making sure I was eating a good breakfast. Coconut water replenished my energy and she made sure my dirty clothes were in the laundry before we left.
During breakfast my uncle has asked if I had any issues making coffee in the morning.
"No, I learned that it rinses first, except for that, there was no issue".
"Hmm, it was asking for coffee grounds, I wasn't sure if you were able to get coffee. Let me show you were to put in the beans incase it happens again." My uncle got up, waved me over to the magical expresso machine and gave me precise instructions on how to refill the coffee. This would not be my first espresso machine error message!
Soon my uncle waved us out the door and took us to town to get our nails done. With all of the weight off my shoulders, I was finally able to relax. Kim who was doing my mani and pedi had a hard job. Every time I closed my eyes I would fall asleep, then wake up a few minutes later with a small jerk. By the second hand she told me to rest and I did. Before I new it my hands and feet were looking beautiful and I was regenerated.
The one thing that I really wanted to do, but was unable to with my original five hour layover between Heathrow and Gatwick, was shopping for some new clothes. I find the clothes in the UK fit me a little better and are better quality then the ones in get at home, and I needed to restock. My aunt must have seen this by my lack of styling clothes because after our nails she let me know we were going shopping. First we went shopping for English biscuits; chocolate chip shortbread large as a grapefruit, for Uncle B and then headed to my favorite shopping place Primark.
Sunday came the same as Saturday. I ran down stairs, made myself and Americano, waved at batman and headed back to my room to read. Uncle B and Auntie woke up a little later and we started our day.
Again, during breakfast my uncle has asked if I had any issues making coffee in the morning.
No, I did see a message about changing the grounds, except for that, there was no issue".
"Hmm, it was asking water, I wasn't sure if you were able to get coffee. Let me show you were to put in the beans in case it happens again." My uncle got up, waved me over to the magical espresso machine and gave me precise instructions on how to refill the water.
Soon, like the day before, my uncle waved us out the door and took us to town to get groceries. These “groceries” had added items. Uncle bought the twins two large and two small chocolate bars. (One of the bars was to go to Grammy but the kids and I ate them to fast.) We also got some bulk almonds so I could travel without getting sick. I was unsure how I was going to get all the new cloths and chocolate home in my one small carry one but Uncle B had the solution.
Once we got home, Uncle B went to the shed and pulled out another carry on suitcase. It was the perfect size for my stuff and I even had some room in case I found something in Spain. While Uncle was fixing my luggage issue, Auntie was finished my laundry and we got everything ready for the following morning’s trip to the American Embassy. I always wanted to go to an American Embassy; I also wanted to see what the airport prison looked like. Now in one trip I got to see both, but not as a tourist, but as a customer. I took a deep breath and Uncle B made me an espresso. Auntie could see the stress was toll on me and decided we would spend the evening listing to music and watching the tele.
English tele for the most part is a tad different from American TV. In the case of TOWIE; The Only Way is Essex was the American version of the Hills. I never watched the Hills and after watching TOWIE I understood why. Scripted reality shows are really not my thing. I did have a good laugh and we soon turned to Jane the Virgin, which was a better fit for me. I have a friend who loves his telenovelas; when he relocated to the bay he stayed with us for a few weeks until he found a place. I really enjoyed them too after a while. Jane the Virgin had that telenovelas style and I was able to relax in a comfortable recliner until I excused myself for the night. Before went up stairs I made sure to take a picture of batman watching over us. It's funny how something so silly can make you feel safe. It was also good to know he was watching over my family every night.