As I sit in Seat 20E of Icelandair flight 630 to Reykjavik, ultimately bound for London, I cannot help but reflect on the past two and a half months. I could really use the restroom and therefore am also thinking about my bladder, but I am located in the middle seat of two sleeping bodies and do not have the courage to wake the aisle seat so I can scoot out. I cannot sleep. This flight to Iceland is cake compared to flying all the way from Seattle, a mere 4.5 hours flying time compared to 7.5, plus The Great Gatsby is one of my movie selections, so who has time to sleep? I departed Boston Logan just before 9pm and will arrive to Iceland just after 6am and touch down in London at noon GMT, so tomorrow ((actually, technically now considered “today”)) should be very interesting. Incredibly excited to see my in-laws and settle into our new temporary home in England, oh you have no idea, yet I may find myself to be a walking zombie and struggling to make the simplest conversation. But my goodness, this is exactly where I want to be and exactly what I want to be doing with my life today. How rad is that?
I packed my ((very heavy)) bags just over two and half months ago. They have been in my car, in a tent, in hotels, in homes/apartments belonging to various family members and friends, and now they are located down below my seat, somewhere in the belly of the plane. Their total distance will be over 10,000 miles traveled by the time we unpack them in England. Now that is crazy because that means I have traveled that distance too!
Every person we talk to professes their sincere jealousy of this adventure. It is flattering, yes, and so very sweet, but I do not think too deeply into it, because this moment in life just feels so right and I think why wouldn’t everyone else be doing exactly what they want to be doing in life? I got to see seventeen US states; walk until my feet hurt in cities like Austin, Richmond, DC, Montreal, NYC, Boston; taste the flavors of countless restaurants; stayed overnight in 19 different beds, spent truly fun & precious days with family members and best friends on the East Coast. America is my home, and I just spent two and half months exploring some of her best features. I am one lucky lady, and I hope I take the time to further absorb just how fortunate I am to be living my dreams.
And yet, that portion spent in America was only the beginning. Just like with every stop made along the way, there is something amazing awaiting at the next location and I just want to pinch myself to make sure it is all real. I just had one of the best times of my life, alongside my darling husband. We spent every single day of that time together. And we aren’t finished. AND we aren’t ready to kill each other. Quite the opposite, actually. The two of us are a little bit annoying that way, I know. We don’t fly back to a home Sunday. We don’t return to jobs Monday morning after cursing the alarm clock. I still have a few road trip posts yet to write, about our time in DC, New York State, and Boston and trust me I will get to them in the next couple of weeks! But my mind and my body will be in a new place. The story continues! The adventure continues.
I adore the country and the people of England. It excites me to be on the verge of a lengthy visit which allows full immersion in the culture. Wherever I am, I always feel this incredibly strong yearning to just fit in as a local. Which reminds me…I better start doing my French lessons via Duolingo pretty seriously if I want to have a chance at sounding remotely like a local in Paris in February. Eek! But paired with wanting to explore new cities & towns in England and countries in Europe, I will be the visitor, seeing and feeling certain spots for the very first time.
The next seven months for us do not contain much of a plan yet. But I do know the priority of Andrew and I is the same as it was on the East Coast…to spend as many days possible with family. We both longed for it, then planned for it, thousands of miles away, back in Seattle. Traveling around will be a huge bonus, and I know we will fit in some amazing little jaunts to Europe here and there. I cannot wait to see what lies ahead for us while over here, and then be able to write about it and share it with you. Thank you for following along on this marvelous adventure with me. There is so much more to come. Welcome to Europe!