In the summer of 2019 I moved to London with my husband, our three children, Joey the labradoodle, my mother, eleven thousand five hundred pounds of furniture, several bicycles and twelve suitcases. It felt like the time to leave America. We took all our worldly possessions with us. Nothing to do with Trump. That time had already passed three years ago.
So here we were three years later, with Brexit on the horizon. A graduate program in London. It felt but right to shift base from one form of immigration led life in to another. Brexit and a different form of racism I was warned by some but the reports and monologues from cab drivers around London seemed to indicate that most people in the UK had been misled about Brexit and what it meant and the struggle to get it off the floor was encouraging. Of course it was naïveté on my part to ignore the many who had expressly voted to be separated from Europe but still one must have hope and somewhere to go. But then it is also general foolhardiness to believe that there was anywhere you could go in the world, whether guns in America or daggers in the UK or bombs elsewhere or the melting arctic or a hole in the ozone layer.
Today a month after our arrival in London, we are set to head back to Seattle and California for a couple of weeks to visit family. Everything is work. Marriages, children, education, groceries, bills, of course but just living in times of walls and immigration raids and then more shootings.
New ones. El Paso, Dayton. You can go out to buy school supplies or drink a glass of wine, you will leave your baby or lover or siblings at home and you will not come back. A lifetime ago, more than three years ago in India on a treadmill in a gym early one morning I had watched another American shooting on the news. Somewhere in this blog full of words I have forgotten what I have written about it. Must be some form of despair I have tread over.
July is the hottest month, two hundred and forty nine mass shootings in 2019 in America, the wall will happen, many walls will happen everywhere, bigger walls, higher walls, the best walls you can find anywhere in the world, walls that will blow your mind by what and who it can keep out and who it will keep within, stuck together till shut down or shot down. Until then I have words to write and lists to make and work to do.