I spent the eleventh, twelfth, thirteenth and part of the fourteenth years of my life living in Belgium, and Thursday was the first time I had set foot on its cobblestoned streets in eighteen years. A teachers' training workshop was responsible for bringing me back to this old home. Once the train from the airport started rolling through town, colours and shapes and sky pulled some feeling from deep inside me, that I cannot quite describe. I was an awkward, knobby-kneed girl again, I was timid and curious— I was being carried back into adolescence, back into an old self.
Memories of my first dip pen, of hopeless crushes on boys, of Claire and Nina, of learning to shave my legs— all blended with the landscape rushing past the window of my train. That odd pain of being between a child and a teenager, ached a little somewhere within me. I had loved living in Belgium.