We can't go to the outlets and not go to the Tilton Diner!!
Jen & Lisa at the Tilton Diner
Michele and Julie at the Tilton Diner
Saturday morning we hit some country stores before going to the Spa
Mmmmm.... Canoe Mac n Cheese
Sunday was a mellow morning followed by the long drive back. I met up with my BFF in Boston though before that I hit the Apple store where I finally figured out how to unlock my iphone. Funny that it took me going back to Boston to figure out how to use a phone I purchased to use in Spain! Ahhh Spain! Michelle and I had a great afternoon of just chatting the day away. A fabulous lunch at Sonsie and then schmoozing the stores of Copley and the Pru before heading to my old fave, Abe and Louie's for a drink. It's interesting how my perspective has changed since moving to Europe. Here, you don't rush anyone at the bar or at a table. It doesn't matter if you've had one drink or 10. You get the same (albeit in Spain, crappy) service. But Michelle and I only had one drink and spent 3 hrs at Abe and Louie's... apparently they don't feel the same way as we do here in Spain - after the 3 hrs we decided that they were giving us some dirty looks and perhaps the time had come to move on. Someday when I move back to the States I'm going to miss that leisurely lunch/dinner/sit at a cafe for 3 hrs kind of time.
But now my trip is half over and on Monday morning I head to the Cape for a home inspection of our house down there and then to lunch with Josh's family. It was so great to see Josh's parents and Becky - I've missed them and it's always nice to feel like we pick up where we left off. But again, being a whirlwind trip, I was pretty much in and out there as well. Sorry!!! We'll be home in June for much longer!
After lunch it was on to the DMV to renew my license. Good times I know... I did say there was a lot to do this week, didn't I?? And then to see my parents for the first time since I'd arrived... for literally 10 minutes. Then off to dinner with some other friends. Sara, Lisa... sooooo good to see you!!! I'm sorry if I was sleepy towards the end and Sara, I'm sorry if I drifted off in the car when we were chatting. But I absolutely loved getting to see you both and dinner was delicious (how can you go wrong with fondue?). Next time I promise to be more well rested before going out!
Wow, how did we end up on Tuesday already? I finally get to see my folks for really the first time. I've missed my mom and dad so much and I'm thankful that I get to talk on the phone with them several times a week at least (for once I will say I love Vonage). After a super fun doctor's appointment I met up with them at Toys R Us to do some early Christmas shopping for the kids. I found it once again surprising how little I purchased compared to what I thought I would purchase. I thought first then put it in my basket. How am I going to bring this back to Barcelona? Is this something they will play with? Is it worth the cost of the extra bag I'm going to need to check? Do I have a spot to hide it in our apartment (that has NO closets)? No spontaneous purchases like I would normally make. Even Josh commented to me when I got home at his surprise on how little I spent (I think based on my new lack of spending alone Josh would like to relocated to Europe forever). It was great just getting to chat with my parents as we meandered down the aisles looking at all that's out there....and there is just soooo much out there for these kids.
After toy shopping it was off to Skip Jacks for lunch. I hadn't been there in years and it was great! And it was nice to have some one on one time with my parents without the interruption of the kids. That alone was worth it's weight in gold. That and my mom and I headed to my personal fave after lunch - Target!!! Again, other than getting what I would call necessities (deoderant for Josh, toothpaste, etc etc) I didn't get much but it was just nice to see everything there. At this point I was also getting sick so that could also be the reason for my lack of purchasing but for the moment we are going to go with this new found appreciation for needs versus wants.
Wednesday, my last day - packing up all that I had to bring back with me and then having lunch with my dad. It was really great to spend that time with him - I don't talk to him on the phone as much as my mom and when we are at the house we kind of do our own thing. But I do miss this kind of time with my dad. Then it was off to the airport after dinner...
Though somewhat surprisingly, I was ready to come back to Barcelona. I do think this was in part because I felt like absolute crap. And when I feel like crap I really just want to be in my own bed. But I also missed my family. And at home I felt overwhelmed by everything around me - the pace of life here has gotten to me. I didn't realize it at the time and I think I only had just started to realize it when I was back this summer (but attributed it more to our crazy schedule with the kids) but the pace of life in the States is very different than that of Europe. I feel healthier here, calmer, more in tune with my life here in Barcelona and am seeing my life from a new perspective. If you asked me a few months ago if I would ever feel that way, I'd laugh at you and ask when I can book my next flight back home. I have to say it... I think... well I think I like it here. Yes you heard it first here. Josh is going to be shocked and amazed when he reads this. But yes, I've adjusted - no, it's not perfect, but then, neither is home. And I definitely miss home and everyone there and that's ok but I've learned that it doesn't mean that I can't enjoy my time here - because I can. And it's ok to do that. So now that is my plan - seize the day. On Wednesday night I flew back HOME to my family...