I’m the Worst at Goodbyes, OR Reason #75,628 I Should Live in a Cave Alone

Had to say goodbye to a visiting friend after his post-midterm vacation this morning.

Over a week-long period, we visited a Victorian cemetery, saw Yes, Prime Minister, had bubble tea and ate in Chinatown, shopped on Oxford Street, wandered the City of Westminster, explored Covent Garden, and ventured out to Windsor and Eton from Waterloo Station.

A decent goodbye to someone important  — a friend, a family member, etc. — is a difficult thing to manage. On one hand you want to stay cool, because if you let yourself slip and show even just a hint of how upset you are at having to part ways for a while, the rest of your self-control will quickly sublimate away. On the other hand, if you stay too cool, it looks like you don’t care. Like you can’t wait to get rid of the one you’re saying goodbye to.

I’m afraid all of the past goodbyes I’ve said in my life have been an unfortunate mix of the two. I’m always fighting to stay composed. And the other person leaves, possibly thinking I’m about to throw a one-person party over their departure. Not true. Never true.

Windsor Bridge over the Thames.

Eton.

A used bookstore in Eton. Here I discovered an early edition of a poem collection by Byron — but it wasn’t as old as the kind I was looking for.

Eton College.

Keats Lane, Eton College.

Eton College.

A view of Windsor Castle.

Windsor.

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