Sunday, August 7, 2011

Back in China

It's 730 am and balmy and the horizon is hazy. Sorry no posts during my vacation, I couldn't bring myself to sit in front of a computer for long while at home. It seems like just a few days ago I was rushing around trying to get ready to go, having goodbye drinks with my now-departed chief editor and packing. Now I'm back - argh!

This was my first time visiting the States during summer since 2008 (!!!). I swam, I took my dog to the beach, I went tubing and bridge jumping with my brothers and lit off ground fireworks, I cooked a lot, I read. There were a lot of things I didn't do. I didn't talk to many of my friends on the phone. I only met up with one person outside my family. I didn't drive anywhere farther than half an hour away. It just seemed more important to either be outside or hanging out with my family. But since most of my days were pretty much the same the time all blends together and it's hard to believe two weeks slipped by so quickly. 

On my last day I went to Dunefest - an Oregon Coast atv rally where my brothers' band was opening the Friday night entertainment. I ate a pulled pork sandwich and a funnel cake. It all seemed like a very aMERican way to end my trip.

Another highlight was getting to see my brothers compete at an open track meet. Billy almost beat his personal best pole vault and Ricky ran a relay (and won) with a bunch of college runners. 

It doesn't get any easier to leave. I had a little cry on the airplane between Coos Bay and San Francisco, but I was also laughing because my brother had been miming aiming a bazooka at me from the waiting room window that looked down on the boarding area. I probably looked like a crazy lady. The crying made me congested, so I got a screaming headache as we descended. It felt like my brain was about to explode out of my left eye socket. 

I think one thing that makes it harder is China has become so familiar. It's not so exotic anymore, just very far away. Short grocery lines, the brand of milk I like to drink, being able to easily find the things I like to cook and fresh air all seem more attractive and important than they used to. 

Thankfully James was there to pick me up at the airport and I got to come home to my little American tribe and my lovely apartment. Now I'm off to work. It's going to be a busy week.

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