It’s always nice, when you have to leave the people you love for a long time, to be going somewhere beautiful. That’s the thought that occurred to me when I was walking back from Riviera, a padaria a few blocks away from my home where I met Dareen to pick up my spare set of keys. If I lived in a place that wasn’t beautiful I think I might have had an even harder time saying my farewells. Campinas, especially in the late afternoon on a Sunday, is a beautiful place. This morning was a little overcast but now there’s that beautiful lazy golden sun that exists only in the afternoon. And it’s so quiet, so calm here right now. I can hear the rush of the buses down below, but besides that, I think the whole city is sleeping.
My flights couldn’t have been less stressful. I flew out of Bradley, connected in D.C. with a twelve minute layover, and then came straight here. My bags at GRU airport all came out at the same time and I waited only a couple of minutes for the driver to find me in the crowd of people. I fell asleep in the car and was back in Campinas in an hour and fifteen minutes.
Now my clothes and bags are scattered around and I’ve taken a nap and had a strawberry juice. I still feel sleepy, still just quiet inside my head and heart. The truth of the matter is that I probably do feel sad this time, unlike last time when the newness of things kept me distracted from my emotions.
I’d anticipated this sadness, though. Of course I will feel sad. It’ll be a long time before I go home again, it’ll be a long time before I see Dennis again. If anything hurts, it’s knowing there’s a lot of time in between then and now.
But it is just my first day back and I have been traveling for many hours and I am tired and not feeling quite ready to go back to work just yet. I intend to have a quiet night of unpacking and a little bit of planning for tomorrow. My students all wanted Nerds candy and Fruit Roll-ups, so Dennis bought them for the kids because they wrote letters to him.
I need to get moving otherwise this wave of homesickness is going to take me out into the depths and I’d rather not spend a lot of time swimming out of it.