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Heading Back to the US Today, Ready or Not

jessflorenceAs you read this, it’s likely that I’m en route back to the U.S. after spending nearly six weeks in Italy. And it’s also quite likely that I haven’t changed my mind – I’m not ready to go back yet.

This trip has been intense, and a lot of hard work, and I’m exhausted. I’ve fought off two colds in the last week alone, and am fully expecting that when I let my guard down next week at home I’ll get hit with something that’ll stuff my head up but good. I’m sick to death of the clothes I brought with me. I’m tired of the hard Italian mattress in the Milan apartment (and many of the hostels I stayed in as well). It’ll be nice to be back in my own kitchen again, with the utensils and ingredients I’m already used to. I’m looking forward to seeing my family, my friends, and my cats.

And I’m not ready to leave Italy just yet.

I’m already missing the nice couple who runs the corner bar where the husband and I got to the point we could just walk in and say “the usual.” I’m missing the weekly market that took over our street each Friday, selling everything from underwear to cleaning supplies to fish to fresh veggies. I’m missing being able to leave the driving to someone else, hopping on mass transit to get anywhere I want to go and not having to stress out about the price of gasoline. And, as tiring as it is, I’m missing being immersed in this place, surrounded by a language I don’t yet fully understand.

The husband and I are more optimistic now than we were before the trip that we can make it work, that we can move to Italy. But nothing is certain. And that means there’s no definite return date for me yet. And that makes me sad.

Rest assured that I’ve still got a long list of stuff to write about from this trip, things I researched while traveling the country, so you may not even notice that I’m not in Italy anymore – and that’s great! But also rest assured that I’ll be working hard on a plan to come back to Italy on a more permanent basis so that I can keep the flow of information going even longer. Although I’ll admit that it’s as much for selfish reasons as it is for you that I want to come back to live in Italy, you’ll benefit, too.

Wish me luck.