And just like that, I'm home.
Driving (and being driven) on the 'right' side of the road which happens to be the left.
With the familiar sights and sounds of Sydney to reacquaint myself with through the window rather than tarmacs full of planes and support vehicles.
Why can't the traffic departing Sydney Airport look as orderly as this terminal full of planes at Dallas Fort Worth?
I hit the ground running Thursday morning. No rest for the wicked (or mothers of preschoolers). I hit the road with Preschooler SSG for a coffee run and groceries.
It was a case of reverse novelty factor after a week of buying single serve foods for each and every meal while I was away. Complete with fancy anti spill swizzle sticks for my coffee from Starbucks.
I'm missing the epic fast food selection that was the Riverwalk Foodcourt already. This Philly steak sandwich was my last lunch in New Orleans. Cooked to order, vibrantly flavoured and served on a fresh white bread roll, how can Subway even be a thing in the US??????
As luck would have it, I managed to find Cheddar Chex Mix at Dallas airport. So I won't be going completely cold turkey on American foods just yet.
Shame I couldn't find Lay's baked potato chips though.... They are Good. Eat them by the bag when you normally wouldn't touch snack aisle potato chips good.
Here's a visual of what I'm talking about.
|White skinny jeans and Havs. Showing my patriotism right there.|
And here's a visual of me casually eating the packet I snagged from my conference lunch box outside as I tried to defrost from the air conditioning inside (while everyone else was out there having a smoke and trying to defrost).
There's an import business idea in there for somebody, I'm thinking. The Oven Baked Lay's chips, I mean, not the smokers at a conference on diabetes thing. May crowd funding work its magic on the chip concept....
|The Murray Rose pool.|
After the humidity and random thunder storms of New Orleans, the crisp chill to the air in Sydney has been invigorating. Not a bad view for my first run back on home soil.
But they were good times (as always) at the hotel gym. It doesn't matter which side of the country you're on nor how many treadmills said gym may have but if you stay at a Hilton business type hotel in North America, you need to be gym side at precisely 5.25am for a chance at a treadmill. They're hardcore about working out whilst travelling for work over there. Hardcore but endlessly polite and good humoured about it all. It's all very motivating for me. One of those surprise joys of my travels.
The suitcases are unpacked, the new things I bought have found their way into my wardrobe and I've survived the first day back at work (in new clothes and shoes, which always helps).
Gifts have been distributed (who doesn't love a bag of American snacks??) and curiously sampled. I'm saving my Aunt Sally's Creamy Praline (in the 'Creamy' flavour, just to be sure) for afternoon tea. Will definitely be feeding back to the group.
|My favourite page from Goodnight NOLA.|
And special books brought home have been read before bed.
It's wonderful to be home and to be loved so much. It's also wonderful to have this privilege to be able to travel as I do, gradually exploring a country that continues to fascinate me with both its contrasts and similarities to home. No two visits have ever been alike and it's what keeps me returning. It's not just the journey or the destination, it's all the thinking and seeing that happens along the way.
Have a lovely weekend!