Thursday, May 25, 2006

I'm leaving on a jet plane...

Don’t know when I’ll be back again… Actually, I do, but why ruin a good song?

It’s here. Finally. Tonight we get on a plane and wing ourselves across the world for a much-needed vacation. One whole month in the land of Starbucks (which is certainly not as good as Arcaffe, but will be more than adequate to meet my needs), super-sized meals and infinite wi-fi points, and I couldn’t be happier (though will forego the super-sized meals, aside from the all-you-can-eat Asian buffet that’s just a five-minute walk away). As much as I love my life in Israel, I do need to get away periodically in order to hold onto any remaining shreds of sanity that I have left. I’ve felt this way throughout my fifteen years in this country, this need to decompress, to lower the permanently high stress levels that accompany life here. And of course, I miss family and friends left behind, as well as an atmosphere that is naturally familiar instead of adopted.

One of the things I most look forward to will be watching my parents get to know my son and vice versa. Not yet two years-old (a fact that will change as of this coming Sunday, hence our need to fly before having to pay toddler airline fares) and he already recognizes their voices on the phone and their faces from the pictures on the refrigerator. It’s never the same as actually spending time together face-to-face, and I can’t wait for my parents to be able to share in my delight over the little one, from the smiles that light up his face to his rapidly increasing vocabulary to the way he often sings to himself, completely out of tune and mispronouncing most of the words, but still charming nonetheless.

We’ve got some great plans in the works for this trip. A few days in NYC, dinner out with dear friends for my birthday, trips to zoos and parks… My husband will also have the opportunity to go hiking out West with some friends, and I’m looking forward to attending my 20-year high school reunion, which should be a most interesting event indeed. I’ve been in touch with a number of old friends, many of whom, I haven’t seen for years. Our schedule for the Big Apple is rapidly filling up as all sorts of people are crawling out of the woodwork to come meet us – a relative busing up from Pennsylvania, a friend from California who will be there on business. Our days will be packed, and quite frankly, I can’t wait!

Oh, and did I mention the shopping? I rarely buy clothes in Israel unless I’m desperate, as the lengths and styles don’t suit me (or almost any other woman who doesn’t have the body of a tall, skinny teenage girl), so every trip to the US becomes an ongoing shop-athon, as we run from the outlet malls to the sales, pausing briefly at places like Macy’s to fill in the gaps. We usually return from our trips to the US with double the number of suitcases that we had with us when leaving Israel, all carefully packed to achieve maximum utilization of space. There will be clothes, shoes, books, toys, music, etc., - a virtual mobile shopping mall.

On the downside, I will have to do some actual work while I’m there, but it’s the least I can do since the powers that be are letting me escape for an entire month (and it almost didn’t happen do to a last-minute snafu, but I won out in the end). The upside of the downside (or at least it is for a geek like me) is that I managed to use this trip to persuade them that I should have a wireless card, something I’ve been gunning for since I was given my laptop on day one. I’m an internet junkie, and the very thought of being able to go online almost anywhere definitely makes my socks roll up and down. For various reasons, I didn’t manage to squeeze the card out of them until now, and as I see it, having to do a little work is a small price to pay. Am I pathetic? Never mind, don’t answer. I know I am. But you know what? I don’t care! And do you know why? Because I’ve got wireless! Naah naah na na naaah!

Okay, before I degrade myself any further (and believe me, I can go a lot further!), I’m going to cut this short. I’ve still got a few things to do before skipping out of the office, stopping to buy a book for the trip (though I’m guessing that my attempts to read while my son is conscious will be futile, so maybe just a magazine) and running home to finish packing (making sure there’s enough time set aside to argue with my husband about why I have to bring “so many” pairs of shoes (four, I think – will buy more there) and pants (five or six, I’m not too sure)). I also get jittery before a trip, and today is no different, so if I can reduce the stress by getting home early, so much the better (although I believe that today is Sushi Thursday, so I will at least stay through lunch…). Plans are to keep blogging while I’m away, though I don’t know how frequently, and obviously the posts will probably be less Israel-related than usual (though equally entertaining, I hope).

As the little one would say, “See ya!”

9 comments:

Savtadotty said...

We are on parallel tracks...or are they mirror tracks? I'm going in three weeks in order to be with my ablmost-two-year-old granddaughter on her birthday (your future daughter-in-law, remember). We'll be celebrating in LA.

Our people do seem to leave Florida during the summer. Bon voyage, and happy shopping!

Emah S said...

Have a great time!!! You'll be de-compressing, and i'll be compressing! :) see you back on the other side!!!!

lisoosh said...

Come out to Jersey! I'll take you round the outlets, just think of junior in all that Baby Gap!

Ziad said...

Have a wonderful trip, and you're welcome to swing by Oklahoma :)

laila said...

I'm sure you will have a great time :)

RR said...

I know exactly what you mean- I've been here over 12 years and I find I still really need to get out of this crazy little country every so often and decompress. To be able to watch the news and the first item isn't something related to terrorists/the army/the matzav but rather some local school board vote or something equally bland.

I also love having my family see my kids (and vice-versa) and YES! The shopping! Like you, I prefer the clothes (and the prices!) in the US.

I'm sure you use the same trick we do- pack the suitcases (in Israel) and them place them inside empty larger suitcases so you'll have more luggage to fill with stuff to bring back. Come to think of it, I'll bet everyone does this.

Have a fantastic trip!! Enjoy!!!

Yael K said...

Have fun, fun, fun. Rest, relax, rejuvenate and get ready for a bottomless cup of (h)afuk when you get back!!!!

the perpetual refugee said...

y'all have a good time na, ya hear?

Roba said...

Have a great time! A vacation sounds so fantastic.. and you're missing this killer heatwave!