As many of you know, I spent the month of March back in the good old USA. Aside from one post that grappled with figuring out where my real home is now after almost a year on the road, I really only mentioned the trip through my Photos of the Week and my travel quote posts. You’d be forgiven for thinking I went home, vegged out and did nothing blog-worthy the entire month.
But in reality I had a jam-packed four weeks. Much of it revolved around this:
Yes, I ate a lot of food, and had many delicious cocktails, and I admit that much of my pre-trip excitement revolved around Chipotle guacamole. But believe it or not, eating is not all I did while I was back stateside. I split my time evenly between two locations, my hometown of Albany, New York and my adopted city of Brooklyn! I quickly learned that while one month may sounds like a long time, it slips through your fingers all too quickly.
Being home in Albany is always a gift. Sleeping in my bed, walking my beloved dog, and being surrounded by my family and childhood friends. Back in Thailand I had these crazy fantasies of having two weeks at home to relax and watch Law and Order marathons. Ha! I ran around like a crazy person the entire time I was there, both catching up with friends and doing the mundane dentist, doctor and more routine. No complaints, though… I’m grateful that there are still so many people that want to spent time with me after I’ve been away so long. In fact I spent the entire month surrounded by people I absolutely love and adore. How’s that for a good time?
Look out for posts about my visit to my former Montessori school to give a presentation about Thailand and a proclamation of my love for Saint Patrick’s Day celebrated Albany-style.
From Albany I also managed to sneak in a quick visit to Atlantic City with my Vegas cohorts from last year. There was an insane amount of laughter and alcohol abuse going on that weekend. Posts to come.
The other two weeks of my trip were spent in NYC. I really love this city that never sleeps. Again, I hit the ground running and did not stop. Upcoming posts include my recaps of the New York Times Travel Show and the Beneath The Sea Dive Show (where I accepted my scholarship from the Women Divers’ Hall of Fame!), and a round up and giveaway from the charming travel bookstores I checked out around town.
As I left the city soon after graduation it was really amazing to come back and see the careers and adult lives that my NYC friends have started to build. I was so, so proud to see what they have accomplished so quickly! But I also had a bit of a revelation. I looked at my friends, many of whom are working so ridiculously hard, putting in such insane hours and making just enough money. And they are passionate and happy and I’m happy for them and I admire them very much. But I realized… that is not the life for me.
I’m too in love with the spontaneity and the freedom and the flexibility that my current lifestyle provides. Maybe I’m sacrificing stability, and financial security, and a flashy career, but I’m okay with that. I love working for myself, choosing my own hours, and taking a break when necessary. Coming home made me realize… I love my life!
Another revelation: I meet so many travelers that have hit the road because they can’t stand the place that they come from. In one way that makes me a bit jealous, because they don’t grapple with homesickness and the “Am I doing the right thing?” questions that I struggle with quite often. But then if I think about it a little bit more and I am so grateful to be in the position that I am, having so much love for the place that I come from. And I’m so glad that I can come and go, but always slip back into the life I love so much in New York state. It might make saying goodbye that much harder, but it makes saying hello a damn pleasure.
Home will always be my favorite destination.