|sent from: London, UK. destination: Santa Monica, California, USA|
I should’ve called in sick. Perhaps I could be honest, surely they would understand. I would tell them my brother, his girlfriend and my father had shown up by surprise, and were only in the country for a few more hours. Then I’d get off the train at the next stop, head back home and see them for a precious couple of hours before they left for the airport. It would prolong the weekend of birthday celebrations, and push the return to reality a little farther away. But, I’d already said my goodbyes – it had been hard enough the first time. No reason to repeat that. In the movies people always returned after saying goodbye. Real life would likely be more awkward. Was I favouring work, really? It hadn’t even occurred to me that not going in might be an option until I was already on the train. I’d made a commitment to go to work every day, even signed papers to that effect. I couldn’t break the promise because it inconvenienced me. Plus, if I turned around, it implied that something might be lost if I didn’t. I know I will see them again, and this knowledge pushes me forward, however sadly.
At Waterloo, I pass through the ticket barriers and head into the crowd.