Roughly fourteen hours.
That’s how long it takes for a Bangladeshi student (such as myself), to take off from Dhaka soil and land feet first on the British Isles. As I type this, I haven’t really landed yet, I still have roughly two and a half hours to go, but then again, I don’t really feel like I’ve left yet at all, so I don’t see why actually being somewhere, or not being somewhere should matter.
And, yet, the irony is – it always matters.
It matters for those of you, who are traveling just a couple measly miles, those of you who are travelling cross county, and maybe a little bit more for us internationals.
Excitement, urgency, nervousness – it’s like everything around me is a maze of turbulent emotions that I have no idea how to navigate.
The funny thing is, this isn’t even my first time living away from home to study. It is however, the first time when I won’t be just an hour away from home – wherever home is.
And to be absolutely honest, that terrifies me.
This here today, is life without safety nets.
Think for a moment, of all the tiny little things around you that make you feel at home.
The things that make you feel safe. The things that make you feel like you belong.
The people that look like you, food that tastes like an explosion of spices with every bite, the endless traffic, the weird inside jokes you had with the friends you’ve known way back when you thought bright green eye shadow was ‘cool’.
It’s a bunch of ridiculously random, often pretty stupid details that you never really thought you’d miss.
But you kinda do, anyway.
Honestly, I’m not even sure I’m ready to think of any of that – some call it ostrich syndrome, I call it, knowing better.
The truth is, I don’t know what this year is going to be like for me. I don’t think any of us do.
So, I’m not going to sit back and worry myself into a frenzy – I may not get to choose how I am going to feel, but I sure as hell have a say in terms of how I’m going to think.
And, the only thing I can think of right now though, is that for the next twelve months, I am going to need to find a way to make, this little corner of the world – where the sun rises five hours after what I’m used to – feel like home.
It’s going to be an amazing journey – I can only hope you’ll tune back in and share it with me.