Today I leave the NorthEast, hopefully for the last time in a bit. I have called this place home; lived here, eaten here, made new friends here, grabbed a degree here, cried here, and now its off to new challenges for me.
In total I’ve spent just under eighteen months here, eighteen months of near perfect freedom, aside of the back breaking swotting for exams. The people have been great too; I only had two questionable incidents – one where a clearly drunk bloke kicked an empty coke can in my direction and shouted a poor imitation of a racial slur, and the other when some kids made all sorts of noises and pointed as I walked past them in Brandling Park.
I leave some of my longest term friends behind. Its especially emotional for Ivy because eighteen months ago, I left her in the belly of the Nigerian South-South to slug out the final bits of her internship, and I leave her here again to navigate her MSc. There are others – Bee, TBoy, Steve, and Charlie – people who have become a real part of my life in more ways than one.
As the snow continuously pours down, carpeting me in a feathery whiteness, and as I lug my boxes – all three of them – onto the train, it is very much a case of saying hello to the future…