Tuesday, August 08, 2006

the adventure finally begins

I've been trying to write this post for a week. Trying to think of a way to record this step that I'm taking in a way that I can look back at later and be proud of. Unfortunately the closer we've gotten to getting on this plane the more jumbled things have gotten.

So here's my best effort at summarizing the last two weeks since we moved away from Windsor. I'm very tired so please ignore the poor grammar and changes in tense (some of this was written a few days ago).

The Week In Dunnville
We had a great visit with Jeremy's family - lots of great meals, peace and quiet, and good conversation. Living with his grandparents was nice because they give us lots of space too, which made things easier since I have been in major need of some alone time. I went on a little date with Jeremy's grandmother (who's only a few years older than my mother) to this really nice pier where the Grand River feeds into Lake Erie. We bagged a couple of coolers and drank them while watching the sunset. (I got tons of great pictures - but since I'm on dial-up will not be adding them until later) Then we went for ice cream and walked around the river for a little while.
On the last day of our visit, we went to Port Colborne for the annual Canal Days boat parade and fireworks display. Each year seems to get better - the fireworks were amazing and left me open-mouthed as I stared up at the sky. We ate tons of food - turkey, ham, stuffing & gravy, potato salad, veggies, a hot cheese & artichoke dip and a cake that said "Good luck Jeremy & Melinda". We took a ton of pictures, finally getting the family pictures that his grandmother has been bugging us to take for half a year now. It was the first time I've ever been in a family picture that wasn't my parents and brother.
The goodbyes were really hard - each one of them cried, which of course made me cry too. I can't help but feel damn lucky that we have people like them to miss - and to miss us.

Chasing Geese
I could go on for hours about the reasons I love it up at the lake. Anybody who reads my blog can see tons of pictures from up here - a very small fraction of the ones I've saved over the years. It's quiet here, you can hear loons at night, there are no lights to interfere with the stars, the lake is clean & warm, the people are friendly and have known my family for generations... I've had a lot of people comment on my move to England - people I've not seen for as long as 8 years, but talk to my parents so they know what's going on with all of us. Gotta love the small towns.
My father has found a new mission: chasing a flock of Canadian geese away from the nearby cottages (using our boat). They mentioned that I should bring the camera and I'm very glad that I did - I've never seen anything like it. There are 8 or 9 of them and boy do they move fast when a boat speeds towards them, flapping madly and honking and looking like they're trying to run on the water. One of them actually dove under water like a loon - something I didn't know geese even did. I felt kinda bad that we were scaring them, but since they'll likely be back tomorrow I don't think we bothered them very much at all. Apparently chasing them has become a fun pastime for several cottagers on the lake, since I've watched at least 4 other groups of people doing the same thing.

** update on the geese: they did return the next day. Jeremy wandered over to the beach where they had landed carrying a drink in one hand and a paddle in the other - they didn't seem fazed by this at all. Then my father shows up in the van, jumps out and starts moving towards them. The geese haul ass as quickly as they can back into the lake - apparently birds do remember people who chase them around in boats. **

Stupid Terrorists
Yes, I understand that this is a "well d'uh" statement, but the news of the latest airport scare caused a lot of extra stress and headaches.
"Hey did you hear about the whole airplane thing?! Apparently people can't even take laptops on the planes! And they might even ban carry-ons!"
"Hey did you hear about the whole airplane thing?! I saw on the news that people might have to have see-through luggage!"
Seriously now - see-through luggage?? Honestly I wonder about some people... When I called the airline to confirm our flight departure times, I had a conversation with an overworked and very amused employee who informed me that half of the stuff you heard on the news was completely inaccurate. She assured me that laptops, digital cameras, and cell phones are just fine to bring as carry-on, but did advise me to put all liquids (even makeup) into my checked baggage. From what she was hearing, this restriction will likely be around for a very long time. Makes you wonder who the duty-free stores are going to cope with people not being allowed to purchase liquor while waiting for their flights. I can't help but think of the thousands of dollars of products that would have been surrended when they first implemented this whole law - apparently there were dozens of bins full of alcohol, perfume, makeup, and pretty much hundreds of other liquid products. Wonder where all of that stuff went...

So Long, Farewell...
I was hoping to find something a little more eloquent to say. This is such a monumental step for me and I can't even begin to explain the mix of emotions that run through me each day. I have had to say goodbye to every person who matters to me (except the parents - they're taking us to the airport) in the last month or so, and each time it gets a little bit harder. I remember joking about the loooong goodbye in previous posts, but I honestly didn't expect it to feel like this. I guess I realized that some of the people I'm saying goodbye to will never be in my life again - the people who didn't keep in touch or didn't seem to care that we were drifting apart. All a part of life, I know, but it still sucks.

When I get on that plane tomorrow I'll be leaving everything I've ever known for a place that still doesn't seem completely real to me.
In a month I'm sure I'll feel right at home.
But for now I'm letting myself mourn a little for everything I'll miss.
Birthdays (especially the 1st birthdays), holiday traditions (and the food of course!), two hour long conversations just because my friends and I feel like chatting, road trips around Ontario, watching my kitty run into walls or chase his tail when he's being silly, hours of Friends and Seinfeld reruns, playing with my nephews, saunas and campfires at the lake, beating the boys at Euchre or "That 90's Game", poutine, current music being played on radio stations, COLD BEER, snow (yep I'll be wishing for a white Christmas), and I guess just the feeling that I'm somewhere that I belong.

I'm a pretty lucky person. Thanks to everybody who is a part of my life - I love you, I'll miss you lots, I'll send postcards, and I will do my best not to lose my "sexy Canadian accent".


  • At 9:43 AM, Blogger Rob said…

    So Long and Thanks For All The Fish!

    Oh, and everything will be good as long as you don't come back with a Wisconsin accent. :-)

  • At 3:56 PM, Blogger NotCarrie said…

    Auf weidersehen!

  • At 2:21 PM, Blogger Tam's thoughts said…

    Have fun and good luck. I don't think you'll miss the Northern cold winter.


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