Over all this was a much less action packed trip than my time at home last year. But that was just what I needed and wanted for that trip. I got to go to Jazzercise almost every day with my mom and hang out with her a lot. My dad and I spent most of Saturday (or Sunday, I can’t really remember which one it was) together, which was really nice. I even got to meet up with my grandmother twice for meals, a lunch and a dinner, which was really nice.
Mostly I just shopped and hung out with my mom, which was perfect. I don’t have too many interesting stories to tell or too many pictures as a result. There was some drama with my cell phones (American and Japanese) while I was home, which resulted in the loss of the handful of pictures I actually did take. Leaving was hard, as it always is, but not as hard last year when I did not know when I would see my mom next. This time I returned to Japan knowing I only had to wait about 16 weeks before I would see not only my parents and sister again, but my extended family.
At the end of August (something I already looking forward to and is keeping my brain kind of in a perpetual state of vacation as a result) I’ll be heading to Florida for a family get-together. When I was a kid, every year we went to Florida for two weeks. One we spent in New Smyrna and the other in Tampa, where my mom’s side of the family lives. The week in New Smyrna the whole Kaufman clan (my grandma’s maiden name) would gather and hang out at the beach. (Clan meaning, like, 15 of us. We are not a large clan.)
I looked forward to those two weeks all year. After my sophomore year of high school we stopped having the gatherings, for a variety of reasons that made it the right choice for all of us at that time. But last year the family went back to the beach. Well, the family minus me, because it didn’t make sense for me to come then. This year, though, I’m going, and I’m incredibly excited.
The best part about knowing I would be back in the States in August was that it took away some of the pressure to get in all the American things I could before leaving St. Louis. It made the whole trip a lot more laid back and relaxing. Now that I’m back at work, I’m recharged and ready to face the new school year.