My Family, who have been in London for nearly a year now are coming home (gradually) over the next few weeks. Dad and Nathan (who clearly isn't a very dedicated blogger) arrive back in Australia tomorrow night. Mum is staying on for a couple of weeks to finish out the school term where she has been teaching.
The London Bombings didn't seem to worry or surprise me that much when I heard about them and I don't think the significance quite registered straight away. However upon reflection, they should have scared the absolute crap out of me. Three out of four members of my immediate family were in London that morning - all of them using the Underground.
Mum had caught the train back out of London a few hours before all the silliness started to make it to work on time. Dad and Nathan remained in London to spend the day there.
I spoke to Nathan on the phone the next morning and he said it didn't take long to realise something was up. One small vehicle, with siren screaming, came speeding past the street they were on. This was followed moments later by an entourage of large, troop carrier-ish police vehicles and a few helicopters. Their suspicions that something major was happening were confirmed upon trying to enter an Underground station.
The next several hours were spent trying to get out of central London without public transport, and battling congested mobile phone networks. As I understand it, they had to walk to zone three before they could be picked up and taken back out of London.
By all accounts, the response was organised, efficient and effective, and by and large, people were calm; exactly the best response to that kind of situation.
In the end it seems as though there have been no Australian deaths, but several very serious injuries.
Needless to say, I'm very excited about the home coming. Not (as this post would have you believe) because of recent events, but because it will be great to see them, and have them closer. I find myself wanting to be the first to hug them as they come into the reception lounge at the airport, and that's the way it should be. I haven't visited my 'home', with all its comfortable familiarity and evolving treasured memories in over a year and I can't wait to see it, together with its natural inhabitants on Wednesday - it's a big part of me.