Football’s coming home, but will I ever be?
If you are like me, an English football fan living in Hong Kong, it has been a month of cheering, cursing, singing and over-imbibing.
It has also been a month of showing up late to work, last-minute sick leaves and a couple of conference calls under the influence. And, apologies to my neighbours for my late-night renditions of: "It's coming home".
Of course, if you happen to be English, all those sleepless nights have only been increasingly rewarding — albeit bittersweet.
Most of us have spent the last 18 months bemoaning the fact that we cannot fly back to the UK from Hong Kong, and return travel is even more difficult. But it only adds to my frustration to be celebrating England's wins in a place that has become my home but lacks the lustre of a British pub in the summertime. I felt the pain most acutely when I had to sell my semi-final tickets at the last minute because of the travel restrictions.
Don't even get me started on how the French bankers are all set to take their summer holidays at home later this month, as their quarantine restrictions have eased. Their football days have long expired!
As I sip on my pre-match pint I can't help but remember how I was just out of nappies the last time the Three Lions made it through to the final in a major tournament. I only hope it won’t be another 55 years before I too get to go home.