We’re home! And, um, have been for almost two weeks. I kind of forgot about this blog as soon as we drove off the ferry. The promise of free laundry, a home-cooked meal and some interaction with humans besides each other has been like a warm balm to our road-weary souls. Maybe that’s a touch dramatic, but if I never again have to decide between eating from a gas station or braving the gas station restaurant, it will be too soon. Here is something we passed up:
Mark’s comment on this was, “Hmm…maybe this is why they don’t have socialized healthcare in the States.” So, so true.
After leaving Florida, we pretty much booked it home in a diagonal line across the country, stopping only for a couple of short visits.
First up, we visited my aunt and uncle just outside Atlanta. My aunt (my dad’s baby sister) is pretty much the sweetest person on Earth, and spent most of her time urging us to “eat shamelessly”. Which we did, obviously, because were desperate for real food and also because we are gluttons. We also watched a very entertaining Hindi movie, played with their two sweet dogs, and mostly just loafed around. It was exactly what we needed.
After a couple of days there, we hit the road and drove like crazy to get to Utah. It all kind of seems like a dream to me now, but those were three LONG days. We listened to the new Muppets movie soundtrack on repeat, and played Twenty Questions.
The reason why we were driving like maniacs was to surprise a good friend of mine who lives just outside Salt Lake City. The surprise didn’t exactly go off as planned, but we got to spend a whole weekend with Jen and her beautiful family (Billy, Britta, and Jocelyn) and I was exceptionally happy.
Jen and I met in grade seven, when she watched me play the clarinet in band class, and then pronounced, “She’s good, but she spits so much!” Also, we once got in major trouble with our totally misogynistic grade nine teacher for challenging his declaration that girls are worse at science and math than boys. That guy was the worst. She and I basically grew up together and when she abandoned me left Canada to attend university in Provo, I was terribly sad. It had been so long since we last spent any real time together that she hadn’t even met Mark. We spent a very fun day at their house and I got to participate in my first gingerbread house! Check out Britta’s incredibly longing expression here:
Here are the fruits of our collective labour.
Shortly after this photo was taken, Britta sat back, looked at her handiwork on the back of the house and yelled, “THERE IS SO MUCH CANDY ON THE BACK OF THIS HOUSE. YOU COULDN’T FIT ANY MORE CANDY ON HERE IF YOU WANTED TO!” It was awesome.
From Utah, we drove pretty much nonstop back home. It really felt so strange to be covering highway that we’d been on before, almost half a year earlier. I suppose this is where I should wrap up the blog with a list of life lessons I’ve learned on this trip, but I’m not going to do that. Instead I will say this: Being on the road for five months straight made me realize how much of this world I still want to see and at the same time, how much of a homebody I really am. I am so excited for our trip overseas (details forthcoming!) but also for coming back and making a home for us. When we started planning this trip over three years ago, we really had no idea what it would entail or how we would make it happen, but we were in it together every step of the way.
p.s. Why, yes, that is a villainous moustache growing from Mark’s face! Love it or loathe it? Reply in the comments!