So.  I’m back.  Back in the UK.  Back in Wales.  Back in Snowdonia.  Back on the hill.

The man survived without me.  As did the fur and feather babies.

Life did, indeed, go on. . . .

And me? How am I? How was my little trip?

Well. . . .

I’m okay.  I think.

It was and wasn’t the trip I had planned.

I spent more time with people I wanted to see than I had planned, and I spent less time on my own than I had hoped.  Which was good.  And less good.

From my experience, Snowdonia never gets hot. Certainly we’re never hot up here on the hill.

Alabama, though.  Alabama gets hot.  Oh how hot it gets.  And how I miss that heat.  I love it.  I feel it and miss it now as I’m writing this.  It sears.  It swelters.  It burns.  It stinks.  It is glorious.

It will take me quite some time to warm up again, so to speak.

The sun and sound and smell of the Gulf Coast revive in wonderful ways.

As do friends – new and old and new again.

And then, of course, there’s just the general wonderfulness of land and air that raised you and sustained you.

And the excitement and pride of seeing a good city make strides toward becoming a great city.

But this, apparently, must sit alongside the frustration and despair of seeing towns wither and die.

And of witnessing state and federal governments willfully destroy communities – closing nature preserves, denying individuals access to basic services, discriminating openly on the basis of economics.

All while protecting the citizens’ ‘right’ to mow down their peers with their guns.

So.

I’m back.

Sad to leave.

Unable to stay.