"We have more reasons to love each other based on our common humanity than to victimize one another because of any difference."

Friday, January 22, 2010

The Return

Today is my last day in San Diego. I leave early tomorrow morning. I'm packing right now and thinking about how I don't have time to go to my turbo kick box class I like so much. I have an anxious stomach from all the things I am stressing about. As I was packing all my yarn and books, and journals I came across something I had written on the plane ride home from Barcelona. Here it is:

I came to Barcelona with few expectations, largely because I didn't know what to expect. I was determined to make 'Spanish friends' and become a fluent American student living in the most cosmopolitan city in the world. Things didn't go as planned...Spanish friends are hard to come by. But I met a lots and lots of people. Including Hannah, one of my best friends. She is an incredible person with a feisty spirit, a natural knack for crafting, and an enthusiastic adventurer. We bonded over our love of tea, making Christmas cards, our need for thriftiness, and most importantly over the fact that we were both in a new and foreign place trying to figure out where we stood in it all.
I remember very vividly (and probably always will) spending one of my first days with her, Allan, and Tom. We were sitting at the dock at the end of Las Ramblas eating our lunch and talking. The sun was warm, the weather lovely, and I remember thinking what a fantastic place this is. Soon after Hannah and I started formulating a to do list. We put things on the list that we thought were significant or would be fun. Cliche things like staying out till the sun rises and ride a motorcycle. After the first few weeks the list slowly disappeared from our lives...and for a good reason. The most important things that happened to us in Spain were never things we would have ever thought to put on a list. Things like crocheting on Monday nights in the Baguetina and getting free wine, going to a chocolate fondue party with strangers that would become friends, hunting for mushrooms, or having my first language exchange and the intense feelings of pride and accomplishment that went with it. Or, as Hannah wisely pointed out making life-long friendships was never on the list.
As we now start our decent into Chicago it's beginning to sink in a little how weird it will be next semester without her. Especially with her essence all over Barcelona.

We've already started planning her summer visit to Juniata.
So I've got to get back to packing and trying to take deep calming breathes...Next time I write I'll be back in Europe!


Emi Koch said...

You are amazing and I love you so much and I cannot wait to see you in Espana.
You are braver than you know.

Lindsay said...

Yay! You're going to have so much fun! Decide on EVERYTHING you want to do because time will fly! If you can, buy plane tickets to the places you want to go, the sooner the cheaper.

Bon viatge!