Who says (self) discovery doesn't happen when you're out and about?
- Leaving my phone behind was a super idea. I didn't miss it once, though I did borrow mum's phone to send a couple of texts. But a few texts in ten days isn't bad at all. I hadn't wanted to take my phone for several reasons, (a) because it mars the illusion of leading a hermit's life far, far away (b) because when we last went there eleven years ago, there were no phones and I wanted the trip to be as close to that experience as possible (c) it was my birthday and I had no idea how to tell people to stop talking if they called to wish while I was on roaming (d) it would've been really stupid to take it and switch it off on my birthday (e) I absolutely detest being available or reachable all the time. So uncool. I miss the old days of landlines and answering machines (which we never had) and no obligation to call someone back unless expressly asked to do so, and oh, blank calls.
- I have awful stamina (I sit around doing nothing all day, but who would've thought). Well, I'm being hard on myself. I managed the walks pretty well as long as they were on level(ish) ground or downhill, but the uphill ones took the mickey out of me and left me huffing and puffing like a hundred-year-old. That said, I didn't slip on the slippery rocks or pine needles even once (yay) though my calf muscles ached for 2 days after we got home.
- This was my first real long-ish term experience with kids, and oh, they like me. A little too much, which made me want to tear my hair out at times, but who doesn't enjoy being a beloved didi? Also, being a teacher is hard. And being a mother must require infinite patience. But despite it all, I missed them so much when I was away for just one evening!
- It IS possible to develop a healthy indifference to buzzing and creepy creatures after a while. You will never exactly be pleased to see them when they appear (and appear they shall) but you can calmly assess the situation and decide whether to move, swat or kill rather than screeching unabashedly. A good thing in the long run; it even made me deal with the lizards and mouse that awaited us here at home with decided poise. But more on this later.