You say goodbye, I say hello.

🎢🎡 Hello, hello. I know you say goodbye but I say hello. 🎢🎡

Have I got that song in your head now? If not go and listen to it. My husband will point out the lyrics are wrong but hey, he’s a big Beatles fan.

So we’re here. We’re in Japan. Everything moved so quickly after my last post that I didn’t even have much time to crochet. Shocking I know! The hubby was amazing at helping me with paperwork so I didn’t drown in it and also helping me  generally organise stuff. The kids finished French school on 22nd February as that was their half term. It seems a very long time ago now! We went to England a month later after saying goodbye to our friends in France. In the mere 18 months we lived there we met some good folk. Lots of people wishes us all a good journey and bon courage for our future endeavours. We received unexpected gifts and shed many tears. Tears of sadness, of excitement, of anxiety and of shear unabashed overwhelming gratitude for the love.

In England we saw as much family and met as many friends as we could. More tears were shed. Everytime anyone hugged me I was overwhelmed with emotion and shook in their arms as I cried. Moving to France was a big deal but, in the scheme of things, not that far away. My dad kept saying to me that he wasn’t surprised I was overwhelmed. In fact I was so overwhelmed that I missed a train!!! I managed to get the kids from Toulouse to Devon on 4 different trains, by myself, and didn’t miss any trains or loose anyone. But going to London to get our visas and my husband and kids get on the train whilst I get a coffee. As I walk down the platform the train pulls out. With my reusable coffee cup in hand I run down the platform shouting “Stop the train! That’s my train!!!” Like a mad woman. I get strange looks all around and somewhere that CCTV tape is being replayed! We were reunited at a later station. I shall now never live it down and I’ve made my kids stupidly anxious about missing trains. Oops.

One of the hardest things was saying goodbye to everyone we loved, including our beautiful dogs. I said to my mum “We will phone every week and be in touch lots.” She replied “Yes, but I can’t hug you.” And she made me cry again! It wasn’t hard to make me cry to be fair. Saying goodbye that final morning before getting our train to London (before our flight out) was so hard. Firstly we said goodbye to our dogs. We miss them so much. It’s the first time they haven’t lived with us for 12 years. They’re staying with my parents and are fine according to all reports but we miss them terribly. They are, and will always be, part of our family. 

After crying over and hugging the dogs my parents took us to the station. We had many, many hugs and kisses and my mum walked down the platform to wave. After that final goodbye and managing to smile I was a mess. The first few weeks apart seem to be the hardest.

But, after all that, we said hello. Hello to our new home. Our eldest whispered in my ear at the arrivals gate “we’re home.” I was pleased she was excited as it helped. 

Since arriving we’ve found a new house (currently living in a temporary apartment for a couple more weeks), met some lovely people, seen people dressed as geisha and taken hundreds of photos of cherry blossoms. We’ve also discovered that the Japanese are lovely, welcoming and understanding. 

I shall finish of with a selection of photos I’ve taken. It’s amazing what you can capture on an iPhone. 

See you next time. Xxx