Friday, March 1, 2013

We're back! How the heck did this happen?

Even as we sat in the jungle on Koh Ra, knowing it was our last night, I couldn't really wrap my head around the idea that it was over and that we were going home. Maybe I was numb, in denial. It just didn't seem possible that we could be so quickly transported away from this place that had been so full of rich and memorable experiences, that was so separate for our other life back in Europe.

The Last Breakfast.
Last trip to the beach.
Bye-bye Koh Ra!
At the airport, starting to feel real.
Boom! We're back! Just like that. (Except Papa, we left him in Bangkok.)

A midnight flight was our friend, as Simon fell asleep immediately (as did his Mama) and slept the whole flight to Dubai. A nap on the next flight along with Finding Nemo and Monsters Inc. and I have to say it was a very easy (if not long - 28 hours door to door) travel day with a toddler.

We were greeted by the familiar face of my friend Maha. Then we had to brave the cold streets to get to Barbara's house, where we were staying for the first few days. Not surprisingly, we were ill-prepared for the cold and poor Simon was nearly I tears. "Cold, Mama." So, I carried Simon and all of our backpacks the few blocks to Barbara's house, being careful not to make eye contact with my old German ladies who would surely give me an earful regarding my clearly lacking parenting skills. I didn't need them to tell me - I was we'll aware.

It's strange how quickly life was normal again. The dreary gray sky hadn't changed much since we left its back in November. But it was great to see all of our friends, and Simon was stoked to see so many toys! No culture shock for this kid. And, magically, no jet lag either! It's just a 6 hour difference and going west is always easier, but I had not expected to get off so easily!

Also, note how Simon's hair and suddenly grew 3 inches. His tight curls of SE Asia are gone, replaced by a messy mop of blond waves.

We have spent the week catching up with friends and visiting some of our favorite Ddorf places (Spielschiff and a Midi). It's a hello and goodbye all at once, something I am not sure is even registering with me. It's Friday and we will move to Amsterdam on Monday. Whoa!

Happy to have milchschaum again!
Happy to have milchschaum again!
How was it? Of course everyone asks that. Great! Fantastic! Amazing! So much fun! I don't know really know how to respond. It's too big of a question with too big of an answer. We had fun, saw so much, created so many great memories and did it all together as a family. I know that this experience will stay with us forever, but I know that I am not done processing it. Just being back here and returning to a different way of life will allow me to continue to reflect on our experiences.

But the adventures continue. Watch out, Amsterdam, the Oppenwigs are on their way!


1 comment:

  1. "It's too big of a question with too big of an answer." NOW THAT'S THE TRUTH! What an amazing adventure it has all been...and you will probably be processing it your entire life :-) Enjoy being back, and good luck with the big move! I'm excited for you, and hopefully we'll see you again in the near future!! Thanks for sharing part of the journey with us!