My last full day in Salisbury was a hard one. It took all of my energy not to sob. It was so nice getting to spend time with my family. They’re so polite that they have a series of code words to express displeasure with a telecom program, a chore, or a pub. In the States, safe words are an entirely different thing.
My stepmom, Juliet, has some health challenges that she’s working to overcome. This meant that I had time daily in my hotel room to stain the pillowcases with mascara black grief tears. Juliet thoughtfully researched interesting and clean pubs for us to enjoy together.
My step-grandparents made me feel as welcome as a visiting dignitary. They made special food, offered me a room in their home, and adjusted their schedule to allow for my popovers. They were funny and kind and all the things you want in grandparents.
Getting to meet so much of my extended step-family for the first time was a blast. My aunt’s dramatic reaction to my theatrical explanation of the US’s electoral system was memorable. I wish all Americans yelled, “But that’s not fair!” about it like she did.
I wish that Constance could have come along and met them too. It’s comforting to know that you have so many people who care about you. I think we could all work on appreciating the preciousness of humanity.