God it feels good to be home.
Maybe I’m a little tired of constantly traveling.
Maybe I’m looking forward to spending the holidays with my family and friends
Or maybe, I’ve just become confident in my lifestyle.
I don’t know what it is about this trip home, but it feels right. It feels like for the first time in a long time, NJ is where I’m supposed to be.
It didn’t feel that way when I visited the USA last year.
After 18 months of travel, living in Australia, gallivanting SE Asia, my last trip home was a bit nerve-wrecking. Why? I got into this pace traveling. I was living the dream I always imagined for myself as a child and I felt like, if I went home, even if I knew it was only for a short while, something would keep me there.
This time is different. A shorter time away, only 15 months, but a longer time on the road altogether, almost three years minus a six week visit home, I feel confident coming home this trip. Confident in the fact that, though I still refer to NJ as my home more than anywhere else in the world, I know it won’t keep me, nor will any place else.
I think I was born to live this life: six months to a year working here, a few traveling around there and another six months working some place else.
Rinse and repeat.
With all I’ve seen and all I’ve accomplished over the past three years, I kind of feel like I can do anything. And I know that no matter what happens, I’ll always travel. Even if my options abroad run out and I need to work around the US, I’ll do it by traveling. Even if I have no money, I know there are always options to finding new experiences on the road.
In fact, it’s the times when I have the least that I have the best adventures.
So with that fear out of the way, I was able to just enjoy this trip home. Though I’m not sure a post about my happenings at home will be quite as exciting as the ones in SE Asia, I’m going to give it a go anyway.
My time home is all about catching up with family and friends, moving house and eating.
The thing I miss the most when I’m away is the people I love. It feels so good to see my dad and know that it isn’t for only two weeks. I get to meet his new lovely lady. I get to spend time with my aunt, uncle, brother and sister-in-law. And one of the things I was most looking forward to, I’ve been able to get to know my one-year-old nephew. I came home for his birth the year before, but now he’s walking and talking. All I can say is that he’s amazing and I’m already working on getting him to travel.
After a weekend of catching up with family and getting over jet lag, it was time to get in touch with friends. Ric and I spent a few nights on the town with different people. Mike, my best friend from high school, lives in Philadelphia and Julia, one of my best friends from college, was visiting NJ the week I got back. She now lives in LA, so it was so lucky that our visits overlapped. I also got to catch up with Michele, another friend from college, who asked me to be in her wedding, which I’m so excited about.
On a somewhat sad note, my dad has decided to sell the home I grew up in. It makes sense for him, but I’m not going to lie and say I’m not a bit sad to see it go. So this trip home, we won’t be staying there. But it seems there is no shortage of homes available to me in NJ at the moment. Ric and I are staying in my aunt and uncle’s house at the moment, but we’re meant to be moving all my things into my dad’s new house.
I went from being homeless, to having three to choose from.
Did I mention Ric is visiting home with me as well?
It should be a no brainer, we go everywhere together, but in case you were wondering, he is. That makes the trip home extra special for me, because I get to see it all through his eyes. Canada and USA are the places he wants to travel most, so I love seeing how excited he gets about simple things over here, like steam coming out of street grids and the size of our burgers, which leads me to my final point about coming home, food.
America is renowned for its indulgence. You can find just about every type of food here, but you can also find a lot of it deep fried. And the northeastern States are pretty well-known for all their amazingly delicious and fatty foods.
My dad is a major food lover. He knows just about every bakery and sandwich shop in New Jersey. So when I come home, I eat, a lot.
A few months ago I published a post about the food list Ric and I made on his first visit to the US last year. We’re still trying to complete it this time around.
The number one item on that list we missed last time is Thanksgiving, which is now only a few weeks away. Did I mention how excited I am to be home?