Lola O.
As always hello everyone! I hope that life has been very kind to you so far in the New Year! I'm back in Phoenix, Arizona:)! I got back Friday night, and the jet lag is still messing with me.

Okay, so I ended up packing at the last minute, because I fell asleep on Thursday night. I woke up Friday around 4AM and just got all the packing, cleaning, and last minute errands done. So I ended up having to bring 2 luggages, a carry-on, and my backpack because all the souvenirs and things I wanted to bring back for good wouldn't fit into one. Oh, the consequences of being a shopaholic! All my friends who lived by me were working so I had no help to the bus stop to take the airport bus. I took a purse strap tied the carry-on to one luggage and rolled everything to the bus stop by myself. People kept staring at me, it would have been great if they offered me some help! I got to the airport around 4 PM and found out my flight would be leaving at 6 PM instead of 6:20, great news for me! The earlier I leave the better.

I went through security with no problems, boarded the plane, and that is when things started to go wrong and weird. I requested an aisle seat. They put me in a middle seat. I always need to sit in the aisle. I hate flying, too many people in a small space. It makes me extremely anxious to be stuck between people, especially if I don't know them. Well I sat down, and the guy who was in the window seat started talking to me a mile a minute, and asking weird questions. He gave me bad vibes, so I asked the attendant if an aisle seat became available could I change my seat? She told me the flight was full, so it was unlikely. I just said to her, if one does become available please give it to me. Not to mention my row was by the bathrooms which just made it even less appealing. Middle seat, creepy guy, and bathrooms. No, No, and NO!

The guy who had the aisle seat came and sat down. I noticed an empty seat in front of me in the exit row, it was a window but with plenty of leg space so I was going to sit there. He asked me what was up, because he saw me looking so anxious and I told him I hate sitting in the middle. Aisle guy was really nice, and said he'd trade seats with me. The guy was like 6'3 so I felt bad and asked him if he was sure. He said no problem. Great! Then the creepy window guy said he'd take the exit row seat. Even better. So aisle guy became window guy, and  I got my aisle seat, with no one in the middle. Perfect! The only problem for the next 10 hours was creepy guy. He stared at me so often it made me really uncomfortable. He would keep turning around to glance at me, and then get up to get something out of the overhead bin above me over and over. He just made me really freaked out.

I will probably never fly again without using Korean Air or Asiana. It is worth the money for a more comfortable journey. This flight had no individual screens to choose what you want to watch, and so I was dying of boredom the whole time. For some reason I thought it would be the same as when I first traveled to SK, so I hadn't prepared anything. I got to San Fransisco in one piece. I went through immigration and then I went to get my luggage to go through customs. I was trying to pull my luggage but there were too many luggages under mine and I cut my pinky finger. At first it seemed to not be a big deal, but then so much blood started coming out. I had nothing but wet wipes so I wrapped my finger, got my other luggage, and went to customs. The security guy could tell something was wrong. I'm pretty sure I looked like I was going to cry, because that is how I felt. He took me to another security guy who bandaged me up, the cut was pretty deep and painful. He also let me take a shortcut out.

After, I rechecked my luggage, went through security again, and made it to my gate almost two hours later. Seriously, you have to have a layover coming into the US. Immigration and customs takes so much time. I had about two hours before my next flight so I just watched Grey's Anatomy and skyped my family. The second flight I got my aisle seat, and the only bad thing was the crazy turbulence we went through. I arrived in Phoenix the same time I left Seoul. Time differences are such a mind trip. I got to baggage claim, and all of a sudden my brother was behind me. I was so happy to see him. I kept hugging him over and over. It felt and still feels like I am awake in a dream right now. Somethings are different, and somethings are the same. It feels a bit alien to me because I've been out of the loop.

My brother and I got my luggage and headed to my mom waiting in the car. Wow! My mom was looking so beautiful. I couldn't stop staring at her. I was so happy to see her. It was a great moment. Phoenix is so hot right now. I packed all the wrong stuff. You can even wear shorts if you wanted to. As we drove on the highway  to my mom's house I had that feeling of returning to home. I think no matter where I go AZ will always be where home is. It's so beautiful here. The sky is beyond lovely. The air is fresh and clean. The roads open and not filled with people or cars. There is room to breathe, to be, to think. I've missed home. I've missed these open spaces. I've missed my family and friends. It feels good to be home. Although the time is short, even being here for one moment, is a moment that counts.

There are a lot of people I need to see, and places I need to go to while I'm here. I want to make the most out of my days. I cannot wait to drive my car. Hopefully tomorrow. The only thing I miss is the stillness and solitude of having my own space. Right now everyone is sleeping so I have a moment to catch my breathe, and put my thoughts down. I feel different. I have to ask myself, is this for real? Am I really here? It's as if my vision is blurry and my head is filled with clouds. I'm kind of floating around in this waking dream.

I'm happy to be back. To be here. To eat my grandma's cooking. See my mom's gorgeous smile. Look at my little brother living on his own. Just seeing them in their element, living their lives it makes my heart feel happy, feel peace. It just feels good to see all the people who mean so much to me, who have been there with me through everything, who continue to be my reasons for making my life something wonderful. This is home to me. Not a state, not a city, not a house. Home is people I love. It will always be found in them no matter where I go or they go. When I'm with them, I am at home. It feels great to be home!!!

Be blessed,
~Lola O.~
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