Monday, January 01, 2007

Winding down and heading back

We are on the last day of our whirlwind 16-day tour of America, heading back to china tomorrow. We’re in Bay City, staying in Harold and ruth’s house with 10 other people. There are people sleeping (or nor) in every nook and cranny of the house.

It’s been a good trip but I think we feel ready to head back. You can only sleep like sardines for so many nights. One good thing about packing so much into such a short time is it makes the short time feel like a long time, in every possible way. In other words, it doesn’t feel like too short of a trip. It’s really quite remarkable that we’ve only been gone for two weeks.

Despite that, of course, with almost everyone we saw, we could have spent twice the time with them, and there were many things left undone and people left unseen. That’s just the nature of our lives for now.

We are still accumulating bags and bags worth of stuff, largely because of Chanukah and other presents for the kids. We have largely avoided big shipping trips that have marked previous visits home. I think that in the relatively short time we’ve been in China it’s become easier to get just about everything and you also just get used to things. The only thing I really feel compelled to bring back is coffee and hot sauce.

I’m excited to get back at this point but not so much for the flight back. It’s a bit of a grueling endurance test no matter how you cut it. We are flying back from Chicago this time, which is how Becky and I went the first time we visited but which we have never done as a family.. and we have an extra flight for the first time, albeit a short one from Bay city to Chicago. I just don’t think there’s any way to do this without feeling like hell on the other hand. The key is not feeling like you want to unscrew your head midflight. I’ll let you know how that goes.

I have to turn a column in the day after we return and the flight seems like a fine subject to me.