Back To The States

June 1, 2017

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Warning: this post is really scatter-brained and I'm too lazy to fix it.

I officially started getting ready to go home the day before my checkout appointment was. Unlike Denison, Jacobs has a formal checkout with a staff member where students show them around their spotless (hopefully) apartment. If it isn't spotless, you could be charged. In fact, I heard someone got charged for having a dusty phone, so it's important to really scrub. I was told that I needed to be out of my room by 11am on Wednesday, so, like I said, I started on Tuesday. I didn't have to much stuff and my room wasn't too messy. Lo-and-behold, however...Julius left earlier than me and left the common area and bathroom an absolute mess. Yippee. I get to clean the common room's beer-stained floor from his parties. Blech.

Tuesday was sad. I had to see Daniel and Renata off (Renata was actually a bit earlier, and she gave me a postcard!). House of Cards also came out and several days later I still haven't finished it! I thought I'd find a reliable way to watch it on the plane but that was a bust. I have to stream it it seems. Tuesday was the last day I'd be able to go to the coffee shop, so I went there and got my usual order. Also on Tuesday, I went into town with Maaike, Sumaiya, and Gabriele. We got some souvenirs and visited some of our favorite Bremen sites before leaving. The girls had several things, including luggage and lots of gifts, that they had to pick up. I just kind of chilled with them.

The Schnoorviertel.

The most interesting part of my being out of the room on Wednesday morning is that...well, I didn't leave until Thursday morning. So, I left my bags with other people all day (actually, just Jack) and we went and did stupid stuff.Mostly, we sat around and browsed Reddit together, but we also got döner (the last döner), he introduced me to Rick & Morty, and we went and got dinner with people. I finished some of my last bits of work for Tenable (my contract ended on the 31st), and eventually it was time to leave.

The Last Döner. Circa 2017.

I said goodbye to everyone (cue the sentiment) and Jack and Clement even decided they would send me off. So, we headed into Bremen and picked the most German place to get a drink we could find: Paddy's Irish Pub (heh). We grabbed our seats, talked, and the waitress came and got our order. We talked to her a bit, explained that I was leaving, and she said she'd bring us "something special". Aww! She was the best. Not too much later, she came out bearing all of our beers (and ciders in Clement's case) and two shots for us. Unfortunately, I don't remember the type of shots they were...but they were actually pretty good. We were expecting them to burn when they went down, but they just tasted fruity and wonderful.

Shoutout to the waitress for being super dope.

We stayed at Paddy's for a while and reminisced, but 10pm rolled around and I had to get to the airport because the doors closed soon so only passengers for the morning could be in there. I took the 6 (tram) and waited until "Flughafen" was called out on the loudspeaker. I walk into the airport, check-in for my flight, and I head for a bench to set up camp. 6 hours. That's what stands between me and getting through security. I can do it.

Clement vapes in case he didn't tell you.

I pull out my laptop, hook up the charger, and I begin working on this log (idk, adding random things...I don't remember what I added) and playing Civ5 because time always seems to fly when I'm playing that. I finish working on the log and I finish my game of Civ pretty quickly (I was playing on Easy...don't be too impressed)...so I decide that I should probably get some sleep. Unlike many airports, the benches didn't have armrests, so I could lay down! I placed my jacket under my head and passed out for a solid two hours. Great job, Bob.

Without an alarm, it seems I wake up right on time and I hurry over to get in line to check my bag. I'm in line with a bunch of old, impatient German vacationers...and they keep screwing up the line. Eventually workers from KLM start checking people in, and the line gets more manageable. I get to the front, weigh my bag...and it's only 21kg!? I could have stuffed more into it! Wtf. Ugg. Oh well. I hop upstairs to the departures area and make my way through security. What fun it is going through security with a heavy backpack, tons of clothes on, two laptops (personal and work), and watches and belts alike. They probably hated me.

At the gate, I grab a croissant and a coffee and patiently wait for my plane's departure time to creep up. I listen to some more of The Jefferson Hour podcast until my earbuds die on me...then I just chill until the announcement comes over the PA for our flight. We all slowly move onto the flight (which kind of frustrates me because I have a 20 minute layover in Schiphol) and place our bags in the overhead compartment. I notice this little old lady waiting for me as she gestures me into my seat as if she knew I was sitting beside her. We sit down, I look out the window, and she pulls out a book. Wonderful.

Part of the way through the quick flight, the flight attendants bring around food and water for the passengers and I quickly drink my water. My German friend noticed beside me and offered me some of her water because I "looked thirsty". I just wanted to cuddle up to this woman...so adorable. If you ever read this old German lady, ich liebe dich.

Luckily, the lack of haste didn't hinder my itinerary! We arrived to Amsterdam on time, but I was still worried I was going to miss my connection. I quickly walk through the airport, go through border control (or whatever it's called), guy tells me I'm from the "Buckeye State" (hecks yee I is), and I get to the "E" gates. Lady asks me all sorts of dumb questions regarding my luggage and if someone asked me to take something for them...like, even if they did, why would anyone admit to that?

I run to the gate as they're calling the last call for boarding and show them my boarding pass and passport. Woo! I made it! I take the hike to the back of the plane where my seat was and notice that despite me being the last one on the plane, nobody is around me. I HAVE TWO SEATS TO MYSELF FOR A TRANSATLANTIC FLIGHT! That was so great to learn. After takeoff I spawled out, kicked back, and enjoyed my in-flight breakfast (eggs and some really overpoweringly sweet strawberry yogurt).

Because I had two seats, the flight was pretty great for the most part. There was this lady smacking her lips chewing gum or eating or something behind me...but I put earphones in and tuned her out. I watched some movie called "Dave" about a guy pretending to be president and the 8 hours seemed to fly by.

We land, I hop off the plane and head to the correct gate for my next flight. My first meal in America: a Wendys in Detroit. I was so hungry and wish they had Chick-fil-a around me, but alas...they didn't.:( The lady messed up my order (I wanted that dang Frosty!) but I didn't mind too much. I felt slightly sick after eating Wendys, but I suppose that's just American fast food!

The flight home was quick, which was nice because I was starting to be able to smell myself. There was a slight delay at the beginning because of weight-balance problems...but it quickly got remedied and we were on our way. I got home and everything seemed to move so quickly around me. People are so intense, man. But nevertheless, nothing seemed to have changed at home. Canton, Ohio just kept ticking right along...welcome home?