In Exeter to see her daughter off to college, a mother finds herself in a swirl of emotions……I am on the train to Exeter from Paddington, London, to drop off my firstborn at the University of Exeter. This will be the first time that she’s moving away from home and being independent by nature, she can all but contain her excitement. We have chosen in favour of a short train journey instead of a long car drive that the husband insisted would’ve been a more convenient option with the sort of optimism that only fools or light packers have a right to.
It was only when we sat inside the large van that was to drop us off at the station this morning, did we realise that with so many pieces of luggage on us, boarding and alighting from the train will be a task. Once we’re on the train, we struggle to safely store all our suitcases. I tell the child she needn’t have carried all her worldly belongings to England. She tells me she has PTSD from a school trip that she went on in the sixth grade where I’d packed only two pieces of clothing instead of the four that were required for the duration of the trip.