I’ve been home for 8 hours 15 minutes.

It’s been a three pub kind of the day. Lunch was a last-minute venture into the Nottingham City culture at Ye Olde Trip to Jerusalem – the oldest pub in England – for a steak ale pie. A crispy pastry with a rich, meaty interior that disintegrates on the tongue. It was glorious, be jealous. My dad set to charming the locals with offers of cameraman-ship and general chit-chat whilst I took a second to see a man about a wallaby [Finding Nemo reference]. Not only did he deliver on probably stunning portraits of the family of five inside and outside of the historic Inn, but he managed to then introduce me and my Indian charitable exploits in such a way that they were soon asking to donate before they were even asked. Of course this was after confirming I was funding my own trip and not using charity money to have a holiday in India – Why does everyone have to ask that? Who does that? Shame on you.

Dinner was a celebration of my long-awaited (I might be exaggerating slightly) return at the Queen’s Inn a mile from our house in Kent – Shoulder of Lamb with dauphinoise potatoes, I’d recommend it. Then a quick trip to the Oak & Ivy to meet a couple of friends for a pint or three and a (frankly horrible) whisky before home to a blog and a bed.

The fact is I started this blog in an ever-so-slightly inebriated state. Today I’ve covered topics of conversation from grades, girlfriends and grudges, to future prospects, pooing etiquette and profit margins. I’ve left Nottingham in the dust and moved back to rural Kent for the time being, and frankly it’s a relief. Having not been back home this term due to exams and extracurricular alcohol – not that there’s curricular alcohol – seeing some of my siblings and my parents again was genuinely brilliant. I say ‘some’ not because seeing some of them was great and seeing the others was anything less than great, but because only some of them were there to be seen – I may forgive them this lapse in judgement.

For me a homecoming is less about regaling the family with tales of university adventure and hilarity and more about readjusting to changes and finding out what’s gone on while I’ve been away. My little brother thinking he’s now taller than me, my mother taking in stray French exchange students, my father writing his second erotic book, my step-mother selling her glassware for suitably large sums of money. Catching up on the ins and outs of my rather open, ridiculously larger than life family can take anything from a simple sideways look to an in-depth four hour car journey. It’s mad, it’s hectic. I love it. Whether I can sustain this optimism for as long as it takes for me to decide what I’m doing next is an entirely different matter but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it (my little brother giggles, I said cum – he’s that age).

It’s late, I’m over-due for bed.

Before I quit rattling at the keyboard I realise I’ve not (yet) left a stereotypical end-of-an-era post-university Facebook status. So if you’re reading and happen to have been at my university then I’d like to say thanks, again, if I haven’t already. If you weren’t, well then I suppose that’s your loss.

I’ve been home for 8 hours 57 minutes.

I’m back in Kent. What happens next? No, seriously.

To find out more about the charity Chiks, what we’re doing or to sponsor us click here

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