I’m sitting here at Nsimalen airport, which is bereft of activity, an airport of a country far smaller than my country, but which seems to have more functional facilities than the airport in the capital of my great country.
I am looking at my suitcase, the proof of my three months stay in this country and wondering whether I should be feeling this way.
One friend asked me last night if I cried saying good bye and another asked if I was sad leaving. My response to both questions was laughter. I had music on so loud like I was celebrating my departure.
Usually before trips, especially after living in a place, I have knots in my tummy but this time I was numb, no feelings whatsoever. I didn’t have much time to see the best of the place but I sure saw some part of the bad! In the short time I stayed here, this country didn’t grow on me at all.
I’ve checked in and I am sitting in the lounge, there are still no nostalgic feelings and thankfully, the staff at the airport have so far been nice. I’ll leave in peace with no hostility or aggression trailing me.
It’s time to leave and as I wait for the call, I have a smile on my face as I think of the smiling and welcoming faces of my family, the warm hugs and being carried. I think of our dogs that will jump on me to show me that they missed me, licking and scratching. All I can think of ‘I am going home’.
I settle into my seat and look out of the window with a smile. As we take off, I look at the town beneath me and say a quiet thank you under my breath then a smile, a broad smile crosses my face again with the thought ‘I am going home’.
I walk out to my sister’s wide smile and waiting arms. She lifts me up and spins me around, the first of many hugs, and now I know I am home.