It is June and I am on a plane to Europe. It has almost become routine, although this trip is a little different from all the others.
This time I bought a one-way ticket.
I am moving to the UK.
My boyfriend is a PhD student at the University of Bristol, he’s already been there several months.
Bristol is in the west of England, near Wales.
Well, I don’t have a job lined up, but I do have a work visa, although really I’m supposed to be working on my dissertation.
I have all the answers carefully scripted; they’ve been rolling off my tongue quite easily for several months now. Yet, somehow, I am not quite sure that I have internalised any of the answers. Instead I have mastered the twin arts of evasion and understatement:
Well, I want to come back in September or October for school stuff, so I’ll be back soon enough.
Life was too hectic in New York to get any work done, so I’m really looking forward to living in a smaller city.
Summers in New York are disgusting anyway, I’m sure an English summer will be a refreshing treat.
Or my personal favourite:
Well, it pretty much costs the same to fly to the UK as it does to fly to New York, so I really won’t be any farther away.
I’m surprised that no one has tried to rebut that last one by sitting me down with an atlas and demonstrating to me that Bristol is, indeed, considerably farther away from Ottawa than New York.
I would really like my move to be no big deal. I suppose that’s why I have developed extensive arguments in support of this position. For the most part, I seem to have convinced myself. I am just sitting on a plane, flying to Europe, like I have done for the past few Junes. So I don’t have a return ticket. So what?