Heyo fellow travelers on this path of life,
Are any of you weary? Right now I am a bit. Not sad, quite content, very blessed, overwhelmed with new experiences–but a bit weary. And I have a lot to catch you up on!
For two and a half weeks, as you know, I was at home. It was HARD. I didn’t think culture shock would hit me that much, but it did. I found in the airport (even in Quito) I had a weird, pretentious revulsion towards my fellow English-speaking gringos. I liked to pretend that I was different, that because I had Ecuadorian friends and spoke Spanish that somehow I didn’t belong in the tourist crowd and didn’t want to be grouped into that. After some 40+ hours on a bus in a week, a red eye home, and weird bus terminal/airport food when I got home I was BEAT. And then I caught up on sleep and was just sad for awhile, because I was stuck in the middle of two very exciting experiences and wasn’t sure how to process it all.
Us international travelers are supposed to ‘rest’ when we’re at home. College students as well are supposed to ‘rest’ on vacation, but after about two days of that I got bored and ended up wiling my life away catching up on shows and laying around. Texas (desde mi perspectiva) was wayyy to hot to leave the house much, and I was sick for the two+ weeks I was home. Whether it was a sickness of the body or the mind, I’m not sure. But the two do affect each other. It is hard to be at home without my siblings–I don’t think I will ever be accustomed to that emptiness.
It turned out to be a redeeming visit, though. I spent time with folks from high school not seen in years and was able to be authentically Michaela with them, which was something I haven’t done. I don’t think I ever really opened up in high school, and they haven’t gotten a chance to know who I am since I left that place.
And then, the highlight, my Daddy flew down my sister, nephew, and brother in law for a weekend visit before I left. I couldn’t be more grateful that I got to see them all again before I left. My lil’ guy is growing faster than I could have imagined!
Por fin, it was time to go to school. I spent an absolutely amazing, warm, overwhelming, loving, sun-filled, friend-filled nine days back in Greenville. After orientation at the Vista House (an intentional community I will be living at when I return in the spring) I had over a week to spend time with people. My time was filled with people I love, and although I would hit my people-limit at times (introvert that I am) I am so glad that most days I had a breakfast date, a lunch date, a coffee date, a walk around the lake date, and sometimes a dinner date. I saw everyone and was able to tell them about Ecuador and hear about their summers. Really, I can’t imagine if I hadn’t had the chance to go to Furman for the week–it would be much too overwhelming to have someone open a conversation with, ‘so how have the last seven months of your life been?’ Excuse me while I go crawl into a bed somewhere and never come out.
I arrived in Madrid, España Sunday morning. I have had one day of orientation and one day of class, and this week I cannot wait to tell you all about some of my adventures, pensamientos, and misadventures/mistakes similar to those I suffered when I first arrived in Ecuador 😉
Les cuento pronto. Oh perdón, tengo que practicar el vosotros. Os cuento pronto 🙂 Just know that one involves a mistranslation of babysitter. Think of the best/worst place an extra h could be thrown into that word 😉