Nationality: American. Country of residency: France.

And with that, I am home for the holidays.  No place like it, really.  We touched down on the O’Hare runway on Friday night, right as the flurries were starting, and I have not seen the sun since.  The snow’s been gorgeous; the ice, a little less so, and very dangerous.  Yet I have gone out every day and every night to see the people I love, who care about me.  Reboot: complete.  And I am no longer hug-deprived.

It’s so nice to call people and make plans for 30 minutes later, to actually see them.  It’s so nice to be able to leave my house after dark and come home at 1am and not have to worry, or overly plan, or bug a landlord for a ride, or travel 3 hours to get to my nearest friend.  It’s so nice to see Christmas lights on every other house, instead of on one house every other mile.  It’s so nice to wash my clothes, and dry them in a dryer, in under 2 hours.  It’s so nice to bake cookies in a full-sized oven.  It’s so nice to speak English and play around with words and friendly jabs as much as I want.

France is not the problem I’m having right now.  I love France.  It’s the loneliness of being so remote.  I’ll finish out this school year, no problem.  But I’ll have to do something else come this summer.  At the very least, I need to be in a situation where I have people to spend time with within a 30 minute radius and where I can leave my house after dark to do so.

But all that considered……it’s still bizarre as heck to me that I had to write down “France” in the “Country of residency” slot on my landing card to get back into the States.


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