Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Life of a Traveller

These past few days have been very eventful! During a period of 10 days, I will have spent exactly 3 nights in my own room. Last weekend, over fall break, I stayed with a friend in New York. She was the year below me in high school, and she's currently taking a gap year to participate in a program called City Year (she works in a middle school in the Bronx). I had never been to New York city before, so I decided to take advantage of the opportunity to see her and also see the city at the same time. We had a ton of fun! I saw Central Park, Times Square, the Museum of Natural History, Union Square, and went out for some amazing cheesecake (among other things). We figure out how to roast acorn squash and experimented with recipes, and we reminisced about Minneapolis (where we are both from) and our high school.

When you live far away from home, there's something so refreshing about seeing an old friend. Most of the people I see on a daily basis I've known for less than a year, so there just isn't the same level of shared experiences and memories. So, it was fun to talk and catch up! Sometimes I also have trouble accepting other people's hospitality and putting myself at their mercy in a place I am unfamiliar with, so before the trip I was slightly nervous. But, I am SO glad I went. And I hope to get better at doing that.

After break I went back to school and had a total of a day and a half of classes before leaving again, this time for North Carolina. Because my brother was coming back from Afghanistan! For the last few days I have been staying on a Marine base near Jacksonville, NC, where my brother is stationed.

His unit came in on Friday afternoon. It was one of the most exciting and emotionally charged things I have ever been a part of. Emotional in a good way. I couldn't help but watch the reunions that were happening all around me, some of them involving babies so young that it was obviously a dad meeting their child for the first time. It was such a cool thing to be a part of. And, of course, it was amazing to see my brother again. He weighed a few pounds less, with skin a few shades darker and hair a few shades lighter. But, still the same brother.

My mom and brother

Random strangers. But, this little girl was so
adorable! She couldn't have been more than
a couple months old. She wouldn't stop
crying, but her dad wouldn't let go of her.

It's been really nice to spend time with my family. Right now we're watching Sunday afternoon football and waiting for pizza to be delivered to our hotel room. Nothing overly exciting, but very relaxing and familiar. It's the type of thing you take completely for granted, until you haven't experienced it for several months.

In a couple days I'll go back to school, and more than likely be behind in all of my classes because of missing 3 days of school. But, it's been worth it. It's easy to forget that there are, in fact, some things in life more important than class. And family definitely falls into that category.