A week ago today I landed back in Heathrow with my baby girl and we came back home after being away from the UK for more than two months (or, in her case, for her whole life!). It was of course incredibly nice to see my boys, to be back in my own house and to have the whole family on the same continent again. It was nice to get into a routine again and to take things more slowly.
Being back made me realize that I don’t only miss things when I’m here but I also miss more than a few things in the UK. Obviously I miss my boys and being among my own things, but there are also some surprising things that I found myself almost pining after…
First of all, I really missed the UK attitude towards the environment. I’ve posted before about the shocking amount of plastic shopping bags I was using in Mexico, but I also found myself having to throw away paper and carton because there is no easy way to recycle it over there. I guess I’ve been on this side of the Atlantic too long but I found attitudes over there wasteful and short-sighted and it’s nice to be back here where I can recycle and no one things I’m being weird.
Linked to that, I also missed the fact that people over here tend to be more curious about where their food comes from and demand things like humane standards in the rearing and slaughtering of animals, food grown locally and organically and the limitation of food additives and other harmful chemicals. It can get a bit obsessive over here but back in Mexico no one ever thinks about where their beef comes from, what’s in it or how many chemicals were pumped into it. Sure, the food is delicious but every once in a while I would find myself worrying about what I was eating and even more so when I was actually nursing the baby. So it’s nice to be back in the UK where food is regulated and consumers are more educated.
On a less serious note, I also missed shops like Boots and Lush. Boots is a drugstore (like Walgreens) and I love browsing around to see what new lotion or shampoo I can try and there is just such great variety of products, some are even organic, that I really missed it. Lush is another great shop that sells handmade cosmetics with no chemicals and the products are amazing. I had a few pots of my favorites like Ocean Salt for exfoliating and Skin Drink for moisturizing but when those ran out I had to wait until I got back in the UK to get some more and BOY did I miss them!
Driving is of course very different over here and while I actually enjoyed the crazy driving I was doing back in Mexico, I kind of missed the more orderly driving I do here in the UK, mainly because I don’t have to be on the defensive all the time. I also missed the clothes on sale over here because I think they are much more fashionable and trendy than anything I could find over there (even including the US) but I also think that the weather is much to blame for this: it’s easier to look trendy when it’s chilly outside all the time!
The weather also means that there are many more flowers over here and I am glad I was back in time to see the daffodils blooming everywhere which looks beautiful. I’d missed that. I had also really missed British radio and TV - the Mexican versions are not as good (and TV is decidedly rubbish) so I was glad to get back to the BBC and my local radio station.
There are of course many, many things I miss from back home and I may list them another time. But this list goes to prove that the grass is indeed always greener on the other side and no place will ever satisfy me 100%. That’s the great thing about other places - they help to discover different things that may be even better than what you already know!