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Thursday, July 2, 2009

Trip Back Home

I am regretful that I have not written on this blog for awhile but there are good reasons for that which I will detail later.

I recently travelled back to the U.S. in June for three weeks. I went back to the place where I lived and worked for the last ten years, St. George, Utah. I haven't been there since I initially left for Abu Dhabi in August, 2008 so it was a much anticipated trip. Most of my good friends and colleagues live there so it was a time
to catch up and renew bonds. I also own property and a house there so I consider it home.

The trip over was long but I am getting used to that. I arrived in JFK late in the afternoon and spent the night at a hotel near the airport. I took a Delta flight out the next day to Salt lake City. I arrived in St. George late on a Saturday night and after a few drinks at my hosts' house I promptly fell asleep.

The next day when I woke up, I had the strangest sense that I had never left. Everything was instantly so comfortable and familiar. My life in Abu Dhabi that I had left just two days before seemed like a distant memory. It was like a dream-Dorothy waking up at the end of the "Wizard of Oz". I never expected that. Also, I had a wicked case of jet lag that persisted for FOUR damn days. Extreme fatigue and mental dullness ruled those days caused by the 10 hour time zone difference.

I finally snapped out of it and me and some of the boys went to Lake Powell in Arizona for a couple of days of wakeboarding and beer drinking. I haven't had that much fun in a long time! Lake Powell is a unique place where one will see scenery like no other in the world. The initial spacecraft crash scene in the first "Planet of the Apes" movie was filmed there due to the other-worldly looks of the place. See the album.

Two days later, I went to Las Vegas to satisfy my urge to blow a wad of money and get into as much of an un-Muslim environment as possible with all the drinking, gambling and scantily clad women. I even stayed at the Hooter's Hotel and Casino, one of my favorites. I didn't do too bad at the tables and even remembered the basic rules of the games. I ended up losing only $100 after about 4 hours of play, that's a win in my book! A bonus was I met up with CC and her parental units, M&L at the casino. It was real good seeing them! M and I shot the shit at the bar while CC and L molested the slot machines.

The next day I flew to Tucson, Arizona with my St. George hosts to see another friend and ex-coworker. This guy has a Pepperidge Farm route in Tucson so we were awash in cookies and (non-Pepperidge Farm) tequila. His wife cooks the best breakfast burritos West of the Mississippi! Pass the hot sauce. A planned trip to a local bar to shoot pool was cancelled due to the participants' inclination to sit on the patio and veg-out with some cold frosties in the beautiful Southern Arizona desert.

The time to leave came all too soon. I woke up the day of my departure in dread of the 26 or so hours I would be "on the road" back to Abu Dhabi. CK drove me to the airport and it was a painful goodbye as I felt as if I was leaving my home all over again. When I arrived in Abu Dhabi after the 12+ hour flight, one of my checked bags was missing so I spent the next hour filling out forms and waiting for the employees to check the bag room. I would rather have been undergoing a root canal at that point as I was tired and just wanted to go to bed. The missing bag was delivered intact two days later.

I didn't have to report to work for a few days after my arrival back in Abu Dhabi so I had some time to decompress. I had the dreaded jet-lag again but it was combined with a severe case of acute depression. I didn't leave the apartment for four days. I had no energy and a dreadful mental attitude. I think it had to do with being in a comfortable and familiar situation for weeks and then suddenly thrust back into reality in the foreign country where I live and work. It was like leaving "home" all over again. That's why I didn't post to this blog, I needed some time to retreat to my cave. I am OK now but it was devastating for a while.

To all my buds, thanks for the good times---I miss you!

I went to the Spinney's Supermarket yesterday and THE PORK ROOM IS OPEN!!!!!!
Bacon and ham is cooling in my refrigerator right now.


Neil Roberts said...

Welcome back! I can soooo empathise with what you said about everything being the same at home, and then the crash coming back! Oh well... back to the slog eh?

Ace said...

Yep, back to the slog is right!

I am glad to hear I am not the only one to suffer this malady, although I would not wish it on anyone.

The combo of body clock disruption, separation anxiety and facing reality again in a few days was overwhelming. "The Crash"!

I am OK now, and am back to being glad I am over here. It just took time.