Well, I'm home.
I actually can't quite believe it yet and I keep walking around exclaiming things (like, "Holy cow this lunch is less than five dollars!" or "I can KEEP filling up my drink? For free? With ice?" and "I love this country!"). So it pretty much all has to do with food and the price of food.
The Father dropped me at the airport with my very full suitcases. I went to a line that wasn't open to weigh my bags and figure out what I could throw away. The first was right at 50 pounds (or 23 kilos) and the second was about six pounds over. I made some moves (taking out a pair of shoes) when a cute-ish employee came over. The next move was something that has never happened and probably won't happen again. He said he would open the counter to check my luggage and then didn't care that it was a little overweight. He let me luggage slide. I guess it was Switzerland's way of ending on good terms. The flights were long (Zurich, New York, Chicago then Minneapolis/St. Paul) but nothing I (and the kindly gentlemen who had to hoist my rolling carry-on into the overhead bins) couldn't handle.
My good friend Cubby picked me up at the airport (thanks again, Cub!) and we headed back to my place with a little tour de White Bear Lake. (Why, you might wonder, did my parents not pick me up? They are on vacation! But in their defense, their trip was planned way before I booked my ticket home.) We sat out on my deck and caught up, although as he is a Semi-Swiss reader he knows most of my good stories, and talked about how it was weird to be sitting on my deck, doing the same things we did in high school but only five years later. I went to bed relatively early (so far not too jet lagged) and let me just say: My bed is awesome. I had forgotten how comfortable and fantastic that sucker really is.
After running errands and a much needed haircut I had lunch with Allison. She said, "It's weird that the last two times we've seen eachother have been in America." It's definitely true of people you meet in one medium (home, college, abroad) to see them in another context. Allison is so great though (aside from the usual things) in that we can get together and be telling approximately eight different stories at one time and still follow the other's. It's great to be back.
The only thing that is a little difficult is my house. It's not that I don't love being in my house it's just the absence of a dog that's tough. I keep waiting to hear the jingling of BJ's collar somewhere or to feel his wet nose on my leg/face/arm when it's time to be fed. It's definitely a little more lonely here but I plan on getting my fix tonight at my friend Ben's house with his dogs Tess & Tucker.
Hope everyone has a great weekend!