Since writing the original post, I’ve become more accepting that we won’t get caught up on everything within a day or two of arriving back in Felixstowe.
My current coming-home checklist looks like this:
– try to factor in some recovery time – for additional sleep or rest, a not-too-crowded appointment diary (if possible, at least for the first couple days) and time for the activities listed below
– accept that return jet lag happens and try not to stress about it
* Review calendar and upcoming fixed appointments – make sure we don’t miss or forget anything because we’ve been away and that we do have time planned in the not-too-distant future to reconnect with local friends and family
* Unpack & re-organise for next trip:
– shoulder bag
I store many travel items in one bag or the other; e.g. family travel papers, lingerie bag, laptop security cable, etc. And as per a great comment from KimB on the original post, part of unpacking/repacking includes restocking travel-size toiletries and storing them in the wheelie.
* Get up-to-date with ‘at the desk’ tasks and daily life:
– finances & print-outs as needed of items handled while away
– hardcopy mail (thanking friends D&J for collecting it for us)
– filing of any important papers accumulated during the trip
– items on a running to-do list I keep while we travel, of tasks for ‘when we get home’
– and of course: laundry and grocery shopping
* Edit/purge trip photos — we usually download from camera(s) to laptops/tablets each night but I always take way too many photos and they take up valuable space on our hard drives.
These are so many practical tasks, showing me why it’s virtually impossible to feel ‘all caught up’ the day after we arrive home. On a deeper level, I recommend a wonderful e-book, ‘The Graceful Return: Relish Your Journey after You’ve Come Home’ by author and creativity guru Cynthia Morris. I love this book, available on amazon UK and US and covering many topics, including physical care, expectations, emotions, and suggestions for using art forms such as writing, scrapbooking, and mindmapping to help process the journey.
Much of our travel involves seeing our families, but our next planned trip is a short UK getaway at the end of June. We’re looking forward to visiting the English city of York, exploring its history and reconnecting with one of Clive’s lifelong friends and his wife. Until then, it’s great to be home sweet home.
How about those of you reading this – do you have any tips and tricks from your experience coming home from a trip?
Cheers and thanks for reading. Next week’s letter will be from Felixstowe.