On 17 December 2007, Pat and I boarded a plane and flew to Ireland. Prior to this my international travel experience consisted of 3 days in Canada and a week in Cancun. This Monday, 14 December 2009, will mark the first time Pat and I have been back home since then. I’ve been thinking (maybe perseverating?) lately on what I am looking forward to and what I am going to miss. Some of them are pretty obvious, and some would never have occurred to me two years ago.

Looking forward to:

Seeing family and friends

Sitting on a comfortable couch while watching television

1% Milk

Listening to NPR while in the car

French Vanilla creamer in my coffee

A long HOT shower.  They have been rather infrequent for the past two months.

Drinking a Mike’s Hard Lime while playing Boggle/Scrabble/Quiddler with Pat and my sister-in-law Nora

Buying new clothes and binning the nasty stinky hiking boots I’ve been wearing since June

Artery clogging buttered popcorn at the cinema

Going for a hike in McDonald Forest

Going to miss:

Crossing the street regardless of what the crosswalk signal says

Mom and Pop stores on every corner

Colorful houses

Tiny cars

Driving on the left side of the road.  I finally retrained my brain for driving in Ireland, and now I will have to reprogram it . . . while driving someone else’s car.  Hmmmmm, is this wise?

Street food and agua fresca

Opportunities to speak Spanish

Swearing.  Ireland taught me well.  I really must try to clean up my language before I see my nieces and nephews.

The pleasure of meeting other travellers and sharing common experiences

The overwhelming friendliness and kindness we have encountered in San Miguel.  It is like no other place in the world in that regard.