Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig

Posted by on November 19, 2011

We arrived home last Friday (on 11/11/11!). Adjusting back has been somewhat easier than expected – a 21-hour time difference between CA and NZ sounds horrible, but when you realize our days are in 24 hour cycles… this means our bodies only have 3 hours of adjusting to do in terms of the time of day (aside from the fact that we gained a day, but in terms of sleep that doesn’t matter). It’s a bit rough to get back into the daily grind though, just as it usually is after a vacation.

We’ve really enjoyed spending time with family and friends again…

Amma & Appa greeted us at the airport (when we finally arrived 3.5 hours after we expected!) We were all so glad to see them! Our international flight made it all the way to San Francisco before having to circle for a half-hour due to weather delays on the ground. Then our domestic flight from SF to LAX was delayed 3+ hrs for the same reason. I was certain we would just be on an airplane forever. Nonetheless, we actually did end up disembarking in LA and there has in fact proven to be life outside of an airplane/airport.

It took attaching some things to the bike rack, but we crammed all of us and our luggage into their car!

I was so touched by the love waiting for us at home. Emily, one of our friends who had looked in on our house for us while we were away, had homegrown flowers, fruit, dinner, dessert and this sweet note waiting for us.

Daniel's parents had bought groceries and made sure we had some basics on hand so that a pre-breakfast grocery trip the next day was not required. Such a relief! (Not that I had thought of anything like groceries before I saw this, but I was relieved to realize what I would not have to do!)

The suitcases that exploded in our formerly tidy bedroom. Um... HOW did we ever get them closed?? The funny thing is that I took this picture because it looked so bad to me when we first got home. Little did I know how much worse it would get when all that stuff got half-sorted through before I got too tired to finish the next day, so this whole area was a disaster zone for a few days, with clothes and random objects strewn everywhere, and is only now sort of close to being normal again...

Naomi occupying the box in which my parents had sent us some things to help us get re-settled. (And talking to them on the phone.)

The next day, Daniel parents and brother and sister-in-law came over to hang out with us, have lunch and look at pictures. Naomi was in heaven with so many familiar faces, and a buddy to play blocks with. :)

Saturday night we hung out with some of our friends, and Naomi was thrilled to be with her friends again. Special dress-up session, styled by 3 year-old Zoe.

Uncovering the hidden jungle gym in the living room.

I jotted down some of my first impressions upon returning to the US:

1. ¬†Why is everything on the right-hand side?? Cars, escalators, people walking on the sidewalk… it is so odd for that to feel weird to me but it does! Getting used to driving on the left, looking that way before crossing the street, passing people on that side of the sidewalk, etc., was something that happened so subtly that I didn’t even notice it, but now that I’m back it was the first thing I noticed. And it has been the hardest thing to get used to again. I didn’t drive much in Australia, so driving hasn’t been very hard for me, it’s when I’m walking or running on the sidewalk that I keep almost running into people because I instinctively veer to the left instead of the right.

2. Our condo is HUUUUUUUGE! Each room has a big empty space in the ¬†middle of it, AFTER all the furniture is already in the room… I didn’t realize how accustomed I’d become to the tininess of our apartment in Sydney.

3. Naomi has SO many toys! Way more than she needs. Interesting.

4. I feel very mixed up about seasons and weather. Yes, chill and rain should be appropriate for mid-November, but I just came from fresh spring. Even though that felt wrong too, this feels strange as well. It’s like nothing feels right!

5. What happened to all our daylight?? Suddenly darkness is falling by 4 pm or something ridiculous like that, and it is taking all of us by surprise. The days had been growing longer and longer in the Southern Hemisphere, so it was weird to have everything suddenly snap to almost-winter.

6. It feels nice not to be a stranger anymore. Not that I see someone I know every time I walk into Target or something, but there are people nearby who know and love us. We belong here. Even the fact that we are citizens feels different. The Aussies we came across were so incredibly welcoming to us, but there is a sense of identity coming from inside of myself that is different here than it was there.

7. I don’t exactly feel jet-lagged. More like jet-fuzzed. This is gradually getting better, but especially the first few days we were back, everything felt so hazy and off. A sandwich? At 4 pm? Why not. Naomi getting zucchini bread with almond butter for dinner? Sure. The soft gray weather only added to the fuzzy effect.

All in all, it’s good to be home.

5 Responses to Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig

  1. Mom Peckham

    And we are so glad to have you home!

  2. Pamela O.

    Yes! It is so good to have you home!

  3. Sher Takahashi

    So interesting . . . love the BIG brick of cheddar cheese in your refrigerator; love the precious little girl in the box; and especially loved the dress-up session! Kisses to Naomi!

    • Katie

      We went through that brick of cheddar in a few days and had to buy a 2nd already :)

  4. Nana Takahashi

    That last remark is from me, not Sher. (I’m in his Facebook page again.)

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