I'm leaving home!

Well, it's official. I got into Manchester to study physics, with a year in Europe like the cherry on top (France, here I come!). By mid-September, I'll be driving hundreds of miles up north to the great cold city while my friends are still down south packing for university. I'm filled with pride that I did well enough to get in and excited to start my new life in a new city, and I'm scared too that I'll find myself rejected by the people who don't already know me.

And although just a week ago I was walking out of the house and vowing that I couldn't wait to get of that fucking house in London, as moving day inches closer towards me I find myself wanting to hold on to life in the south. There's nothing wrong with the north...it's just not home. Not yet.

Yesterday, I woke up on a grey rainy day and dragged myself to the nearest shopping centre to get kitted out for Manchester; when it comes to big things, I'm ridiculously organised. Unfortunately, when it comes to my desk and especially my mind, I'm a slovenly mess - but that's a sob story and internet complaint for another day.

I bought my first two pairs of skinny jeans at the ripe old age of 18 and discovered that I'd been wearing my clothes too big all along. I bought cookware and crockery and tea towels so that I didn't have to leave my parents too depleted of stuff. I bought more warm clothes for the nippy winters. I bought a lava lamp to light my desk. I bought kilograms and kilograms of pen and paper and Blu-Tak to take notes and decorate my room with random stuff.

Yes, I am a rabid consumerist (at least when it comes to preparing to go away). Please rag on me for that at another time, when I'm not feeling so down in the dumps.

Anyway, my mum and I lugged all that home in the rain and started packing it up in the spare room. I meticulously organised my stationery into little piles and boxes, writing all over it, and packed up my Brian Cox books and my French stuff.

And as I knelt down in the incandescent light looking at my neatly organised stacks of stuff, the thought hit me: I'm leaving London.

I've known that I was going to leave London for...well, years now, ever since I started fighting with my parents and quickly cottoned on to the fact that I needed my own space. But it only really started to seem real yesterday, as I closed up the first cardboard box with my stationery in it.

I'm leaving. If all goes well, I'll be leaving forever. Perhaps in 3 years I'll be in a different country. I'm leaving my family and my friends behind for a new life.

And as I leave - though I don't want to admit it to my parents - I can't help but feel sad. I'm going away to start life somewhere else and cutting the ties I used to hold.