Vacations are always nice. Long vacations are even better.
Until you come home.
I got home at a reasonable hour Saturday night. I had been traveling for close to 20 hours, but traveling backwards through time zones makes it seem like ½ the time. I left the apartment of my friends in Germany at 9:30am, and arrived on my doorstep at 8:30pm. It might LOOK like an eleven hour day, but trust me, it was not.
When I got home, there was one happy puppy waiting to tell me how much she missed me. I knew that I would not be able to carry in my luggage, for she would be upon me as soon as I opened the door.
I got as far as opening the door and putting one foot in before she cried, whined, licked, and jumped for the better part of 15 minutes. When she settled down, I got my luggage from off my front porch.
There was also 5 weeks of mail waiting for me. I sorted through it all, throwing out the junk mail, separating bills from magazines from letters. I had many letters! All were the Christmas cards that arrived after I left. While the holiday was almost a month gone, I enjoyed opening and reading each one. I especially enjoyed the cards that contained pictures! I should be able to hang them on my refrigerator before St Valentine’s Day!
After the fun mail, I put the other mail aside for the morning and went to watch some TV. I did not watch much TV in Sicily. I tried to watch the weather reports so I would know what the next day would bring, but I mostly missed those. I did watch MTV’s Pimp My Ride, in English with Italian subtitles. Even with my limited Italian, I can tell you that much of the language from that show is lost in translation!
The first night home, I fell asleep watching the news (nothing new there!) but woke up around 4:30 am just STARVING. That gut cramping-stomach growling-gurgling noises hungry. I could not figure out why until I realized 4:30 am was lunchtime in Italy!
I managed to read a book and stave off my hunger until 6 am, when I just could not stand it any longer. Of course, I had no food in my house, so I decided to vacuum my floors and get some laundry going.
After the floors were clean, and the laundry started, it was late enough to head to Johnny Reb’s for a good old-fashioned, fattening, American breakfast of french toast smothered in butter and maple syrup and a side of bacon, well done.
They say it is better to grocery shop on a full stomach! This is what I did after breakfast. I returned home to put my groceries away and realized it was time to clean out my refrigerator. Everything that looked older than me was tossed in the garbage. Everything with an expiration date long since expired also went. Shelves and drawers came out to be washed, and the interior got a nice wipe down.
I do not know how an appliance that gets such little use gets so dirty. I think the stove and fridge have parties when I am not looking.
Fortified with a good breakfast and a clean fridge, I put my groceries away, finished my laundry and opened my bills.
Ack. Fortunately for me, most of my life is automated. Perusing the bills was more of a quality assurance viewing. After acknowledging the correctness of the bills, I was happy.
Until I realized that some where in Italy, the old year ended and the new one began, which is also known as YEAR END. I had some catching up to do! I had both personal and business bank and credit card accounts to reconcile, reports to run, files to save.
I also had bed linens to change over from spring to winter, as well as shears for the windows. I bought a new electric mattress pad and added it to the bed.
That day ended more in line with the Pacific Daylight Savings time zone. The next started still too early! The sun had not yet made its appearance and I was off and running. Oil change and wiper blades, check! Paper towels and toilet paper, check! Birdseed and feeders, check!
My life is almost back to normal…