Tuesday, July 24, 2012

life goes on.

It's a funny thing, travelling.  I'll tell you a secret.  France was amazing.  England was amazing.  (No that's not the secret obviously--be patient, geez.)  Here it is.  During those whole four-weeks-minus-one-day of being gone in Europe, I couldn't wait to come home.  Not in a "get me out of here, this isn't all it's cooked up to be" sort of way.  More like a "I just can't wait to tell people all about this" sort of way.

I felt kind of pathetic for it, really, and I knew coming home would be a lot more anticlimactic than I'd perhaps wish.  It was.

I mean, don't get me wrong.  It's good to be home.  (I feel funny writing this since I returned from Europe three weeks ago--but especially with the Justice Ride, I really didn't feel like I was home till last week).  I think maybe the Justice Ride is part of what made coming home so anticlimactic--because as incredible as it was, everyone is just so focused on the work we do that week.  As it should be, but meanwhile, I sat busting at the seams with stories that I felt like no one was much interested in hearing.  Being in Europe for a month isn't something you just get over with a "hey, it was cool."  But on the other hand, it was so huge that I don't even know where to start unless I'm actually asked about it.

(Sidetrack: I love when people initiate and ask me questions.  About anything.  I don't think there is anything that makes me feel so loved in all the world.)

Another reason it was anticlimactic is because Cassie isn't here.  Obviously I knew that would be the case, what with her up and moving to Canada on me and all, but that doesn't make it any more favorable.  Don't worry--I'm surviving.  It's great to have my own room for the first time in my life, and we make sure we talk pretty often.  It's just...she's the one I'd tell every story to.  The one that if in normal conversation I came up with a story that started with "oh, in France..." wouldn't roll her eyes and say "psh, here she goes again."  (Well maybe she would--but then I could slap her so we could move on with life and my story of course.)  She's been those places, she gets it, it's her thing too.  I've actually talked to her about all this and she says she felt the same way upon returning from France five years ago, and anticipates feeling the same way upon returning from Canada.

I mean, it's not purposeful.  People just don't think about it.  Half the (few) people that have actually asked me about every little detail and then listened have traveled themselves.  I don't know.  Sometimes people don't get it.

Meanwhile, I've told the same three funny stories over and over (which is fine...they're good ones), but I often don't get much farther than that.  Even though--geez, I lived in France for a month.  I journaled every single day while on that trip.  Wrote about everything.  Not just what I did or saw, but about what I felt, what I was thinking, about life and my mock philosophical ramblings.  It felt so good, because really every single piece of me from that month is in that book.  Half of me just wants someone to read it so they understand.  (And then I realize: uh, no.)

I really don't have an epic conclusion/solution for this.  Life keeps going.  And life is really good right now too--crazy with looming deadlines and day-to-day issues, but also good, because it's summer.  It's summer, and life goes on.  Don't mind me.  I'm just thinking out loud.


  1. Heeey I talked to you about your trip and actually really wanted to hear about it and I listened and asked questions and stuff! I know I haven't traveled at all, but if there's more you want to share I'd always love to hear it. I can imagine its a really weird feeling coming back after all that, though. The pictures are making me understand your trip more than just words, actually. :)

  2. I loved the pictures!! And I always love what you write! :D
    I really can't wait to go to France! *Please, someone take me!* hehe

  3. I honestly can't imagine going to France (or London for that matter for a *whole* month (that would be the best thing in the world). Literally, that is my dream upon dream upon dream. So, I can honestly say that I would wish to know every detail of your trip!
    I'm sure it'd be weird coming back to everyday-ness!

  4. Wonderful post, Jenn! I have never gone on a long trip but I know how you feel about loving where you are but also excited to get home and tell people about it. I love reading about your trip, it is a dream of mine to go to Europe someday so it is nice to read about it.

    Rachel Keeth // Lavender & Honey

  5. I am sorry if I've hurt your feelings by not listening to every single story. I did get a wee bit tired of hearing about marijuana man perhaps, but I'd love to talk about the rest of your trip! Maaaayyybe we should go get Starbucks sometime and talk. Yes?

  6. Well, I can't say I ever wanted to be home when I went to Europe! I was sad to leave, and didn't feel any better when we actually got back. ;) Now, remembering the trip, it seems like another time or world...every moment was so wonderful. Anyways, it's so nice you had such an awesome time! Though it's to bad you have no sister to tell every little detail to. ;)

  7. I totally getcha, Jenn. I just went on a missions trip for two weeks and it's so hard to try to explain the sights and smells and experiences to people. I just feel like I want to transplant the whole country back here so they can see for themselves. =)

  8. Aww I miss you sista! And you remember the end of the journal I kept while I was in France? It's like the most depressing yet reflective entry ever because I felt like I'd changed so much, and yet life back home was still the same. And how do you bring everything you've experienced, seen, and felt back to the rest of your "old" world? And nobody understands that feeling unless they go through it themselves. In other words, I love being your listening ear and thanks for always being that to me too. I love you more than words can say.

  9. I know exactly what you mean. I always want to go out and do things, but when i'm out doing them, i can't wait to go home and tell everyone about things! Great shots - that one of you is stunning.

    xo, Jessica @ Diary of a Beautiful Soul

  10. sweetcakes, we can sit down with a coffee any time you want and you can unburden your soul to me (sounds slightly creepy...but only slightly ;-) I know exactly how you feel. when you've been somewhere and done the most thrilling things and everybody is like, "yeah, uh-huh. sure, sounds exciting. hey did you know that so-and-so from church moved last week?" and you're thinking, "what?!".
    but you know what that is? it's when you're talking as a traveller to a person who hasn't travelled. I've noticed that people who haven't travelled much or done worldwide travelling, usually don't quite understand the excitingness of it all.

    but, that's the good thing about blogs. you can tell everyone all that stuff that people didn't ask about!
    btw, I loved listening to all your stories about france, every single one of them. aaannnd, these pictures are awesome...but, what's this? grant the model?? lol. love those pictures of you, you're b-e-a-u-t-iful. love you!

  11. LOVE that photos!

  12. How I'd love to travel to Europe! Beautiful pictures!

  13. This is exactly how I felt/feel when I came back from Alaska! It's easy to want to dump everything on everyone so they understand, but they can't. Thank goodness for those family and friends who will listen and care about us enough to no get annoyed with out constant chatter. :)


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