Returning to America after four years in Europe

Friday, May 20, 2005


I'm still amazed that one can wake up in Amsterdam and go to bed in Los Angeles. Though I was awake for about 24 hours, I did just that yesterday.

After saying some painful goodbyes, I had a direct flight to LA. My dad and stepmom collected me from the airport and we went straight to Marina del Rey for lunch. We sat outside, overlooking the sailboats and enjoying the sunshine. In the evening, we went for dinner at a little French place in the Farmer's Market. At both restaurants, we enjoyed fantastic wine, food and service.

It feels good - albeit surreal - to be back. The surreal bit comes from me having to remind myself that this was a one-way trip. I can't get my head around it exactly so I'm working on taking it one day at a time.

But the moments, so far, have been sweet. Eating and drinking well, being with my family, reading the newspaper, squeezing fresh juice this morning, marveling at the amazing selection of food at the Farmer's Market - the first days in a new place are often lovely. Culture trainers commonly refer to this as the 'honeymoon' period - when you are enchanted by the newness of a place.

It's strange to come home but still experience it as refreshing and new.


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