On Sunday we will officially be homeless. We will be homeless by choice, our trip is set to begin. Our bags are packed, our boxes of what we felt necessary to save are tucked away in my wonderful sister-in-laws’ attic, and all that is left to do is to say our good-byes.
This last part of what must be done is the most awful, heart-wrenching, emotionally draining aspect of preparing to travel for such a long period of time as we are. Up until this point it has been easy to just think of the amazing places that we will be going to and experiences we will have, putting the thought of saying good-bye to those I love out of my mind.
The last time that Chad and I left for foreign shores we had a set time frame as to when we would return to the States. Our plan was to stay for at least two years. And two years it ended up being, mostly because I had it in my head that I would be seeing every one back home in that time frame.
This trip is different, we are leaving for an indefinite amount of time, we may travel for a month or we may completely relocate, only to return periodically to see family and friends. Good-byes are difficult, but saying so long when you don’t know when you are going to see the person again… well it’s awkward and sometimes unpleasant and mostly just downright sad. I struggled quite a bit with the good-byes on our last trip, so I have to admit that I am apprehensive as to how the ones for this trip will play out.
For our friends, we are having a kid-free going away party (many thanks Mom and Dad!) where all of our acquaintances, friends and adopted family can come and get a little bit of quality time with us before we go. We will entertain them with the current plans we have for our trip and try to harass them into coming to visit us at some point in our travels. Seeing a familiar face after traveling for a while is so refreshing, so hopefully some people will take advantage of the opportunity of a free-place to stay in a far off land. The night will be full of laughter, probably some tears, and most definitely a bunch of beer, whiskey and other spirits will be enjoyed. (Really, how often do you get to leave your toddler over night and just have fun? We must take advantage.)
As far as our families go, for the first three days of our vagabonding we will be staying at my parents house, followed by three days at Chads parents house. We are going to try to get as much quality time with both sides of the family as possible. Its hard to equate three days with an unknown time apart, but it will have to do. Quality not quantity right?
We are hopeful that both sets of parents will come and visit us along our journey. My parents have traveled in Europe before, so I think they will be an easier sell than Chads parents. I am not sure, but I do not think that they have traveled far (with 7 kids how could you really?), at least not outside of America. So for the three days that we have them all to ourselves, we will have to lay it on thick (think used car salesman “Have I got a deal for you!”). I would love nothing more than for our families to share in part of our adventure. And if they cannot then at least we live in the age where everyone is just a video chat away. Thank God for Skype!
On an even more somber and depressing note, there is one parting that I am finding especially trying. I am in denial that I will have to say adios to Mexican food. Delicious burritos, tacos, nachos, carnitas…I seriously cannot continue with the list, my mouth is watering, my stomach rumbling. How will I assuage the craving once we are on the road? I know that even though I have to leave my mom, when I miss her, I can still call her. How can I call a tostada de ceviche? Seriously, someone needs to invent the food maker box thing from Star Trek. I guess until someone does that (come on people, there are 3D printers now that can print guns, wheres my magical authentic mexican food maker?) I will have to cook my own mexican food. This good-bye, feels like a most final good-bye. And that makes me sad (and hungry). I love my family and friends and of course mexican food is not the only thing here in Santa Rosa that I will miss, but when you all come visit us you better smuggle me a burrito in your carry-on.
What was something that you had a hard time saying good-bye to when you’ve traveled or moved? It doesn’t have to be a type of food, unless you are obsessed with food like me. On that note, I am off to get a snack!