Waking up today was not easy. It might have been because I was up till three in the morning putting music into my iPod I otherwise didn't have, or mainly because I was going through a wave a of emotions. Excited, nervous, eager, overwhelmed; it could be any of those things. Normally, I get nervous with and over powering sensation of excitement when I fly, but that's because I know that within a few weeks, I would be back in my bed at home.
This is not the case.
I'm spending five months overseas away from said bed and home. It didn't help that a few hours earlier I ended up breaking down into tears for reasons I was pretty sure was down right stupid but at the end of the day, it is a major step I'm about to do. When I first made my blog, I did it on the adrenaline that I'm about to do something life changing, exciting, and overall, a ton of fun. I was boosted up my friends and family that this is something great (jealousy was, supposedly, everywhere, however I found this uncomfortable) but when the days were closing in, and still being in this blissful ignorance, it was becoming apparent that this whole ordeal was turning from super special fun time to a bittersweet separation of sorts. Didn't help that I was constantly reminded to beware of rapists, robbers, stealers, and the possibility of moving permanently to Israel and the chance of my never coming back made me become scared to even go through with this whole trip.
So the tears came pouring, hugs and words of reassurance surrounded me, and eventually I closed my eyes to sleep for the morning.
That morning, I had the hardest time getting up. Again, might have been because of my late night endeavors, but I felt like it was mixed in with a bucket full of cold feet. I didn't want to say bye, I honestly hate that word more than anything, but I knew I had to do it. I already said it to my grandma, uncle, and friend the night before and that alone was a struggle to say. With a disgruntle toss, I got up, got dressed, packed the remaining laptop, chargers, and toothbrush into my bag and made my way downstairs for breakfast to Dr. Oz talking about women's periods and advocating on his show why birth control pills are the gift from the Gods because they can do various things like prevent cancer and calm the emotions. Probably one of the more disturbing breakfasts I had but that's something else.
Hopped into the car with my brother and mom and drove down to the airport. I did the celebrity thing with the sunglasses to cover the face from showing emotions (though I'm pretty sure they do it for drug related reasons, except for Stevie Wonder who is blind and Cee-lo Green who I'm fairly certain has no eyes). As we drove, my mom brought up last minute reminders and the shenanigans she did to get our dog down the stairs (for those who don't know, my dog is old and cannot climb down the stairs, he can climb up it just find, but down? Forget it.) She then brought up how my sister begged to skip school to see me off and was apparently depressed. I already was trying to keep my mind focused from crying, but that did an excellent job and caused a crack on my somewhat wall of of emotions.
I cried. She changed the topic as fast as she could by talking about the drug dealer who uses children and celebrities were too stupid to now check the background and endorse.
When we got to the airport, I hugged my brother while holding back anymore tears to which he nonchalantly replied "It's only five months, we'll be seeing you sooner than you know." That was honestly the first time someone told me about the end coming faster as oppose to the usual "What happens in Israel, you will forever live in a Israel and never return." grim talk. All three of us took the two huge luggages and as my mom and I were about to go see if we can check it in outside (we shortly found out we couldn't cause it's international) the nice worker decided to help us bring it in, with my mom instructing my brother to go drive and wait till this is done so as to not cause traffic.
As we checked in the bag with another lady helping us (after the nice man left), we walked to the security check in when I felt the waterworks coming up again. Being a fast one, my mom hugged me and reassured me once again that she will be visiting soon and this is the best decision I have made so far in my adult life (and for the record, I'm a huge baby when it comes to airplanes and travels. I believe I've mentioned it already earlier). So after I bawled like a child, I went over to the security and waited in a line that would've put both Universal Studios and Disney World to shame. Eventually I made it up to show my passport and I.D to a very nice security guard who told me to go all the way to the left because the line was shorter, with another security guard guiding me along the way.
As per usual airport procedures, I went over to the empty bins to put my stuff through the x-ray machine. All the isles were going two at a time, as in, two people going at the same time in order to make things faster. So scurrying along, I reached out for a bin when I hear someone coughing for my attention. Looking up, there was a really tall sassy black man asking me what am I doing and giving me a rather nasty glare. Being to much an emotional wreck, I simply smiled at him and said meekly "Hello". Instead of just continuing to put his stuff in the empty bin he was already possessing, he continued to glare at me. Clearly, this man does not want some 5'5 white girl touching those bins around his presence. Giving a nervous chuckle I backed away, eyes of his being rolled as I stepped away and waited till he was a good five feet away from me. I was already depressed, I didn't need to start something as stupidly pointless as an issue with a bin.
When I did finally put my three bins worth of stuff on the rolls (forgot the word at the moment) as well as the actual carry-on, an old lady behind me looked at me as well as my stuff and gave a chuckle.
"You sure do have a lot of stuff."
"Yeah… yeah I do. Heh."
I'm such a people's person.
I asked to have a pat down instead of having to walk through the rotation machine and the lady there asked me if I had any sensitive areas she should be aware of, based on my previous experience with this question, I knew saying "I'm only ticklish" will usually result with a scoff, eye rolls, and a pat down. In that order. She was different, instead she simply smirked and proceeded to do her job. I laughed. She chuckled quietly to my laughing. I did warn her I was ticklish. Miami security guards are nice.
After given the O.K, I continued on to my gate and waited for my flight. I had an hour to kill, so I plugged into my iPod, and stared aimlessly at the people sitting around me. They all seemed awfully young… almost like high school students. What's funny is if I didn't say anything, most people would have chalked me as another high school student on a trip to New York. Luckily, there was another college student sitting minding his own business, I made it an effort to let the guy sit next to me. I don't know if I'm right, but based on his Penn State folder, I think he was from Penn State. He was nice, but we didn't talk much. We both knew our priorities.
12:30 - Delta Airplane
After boarding on to the plane, I was behind an old lady who had the heigh of a middle schooler and in front of a Willie Nelson/George Carlin gentleman with a heavy southern accent and stood a good 6' tall. We were greeted by the flight attendant and made our way to our seats. According to the news, some airlines are making the overhead compartment bigger so as to let carry ons easier to fit in, or something of that extent. Because of the expansion of that, that made the roof lower, leading to a lot of people smacking their heads against it as they make their way to their seats. I sighed and felt bad for them when I heard a thunk. Turning around, I saw Willie Carlin holding his forehead murmuring "Jesus Christ! The over head is big, but they made it so that only MIDGETS can walk to their seats." I was depressed earlier today, but that line alone made me laugh like an idiot. I covered my mouth so as not to make him mad (even if my laughter probably did the trick) but I saw him smiled back at me and laughed a bit himself. I made my way to my seat (which was four rows away from the butt end of the plane) and placed my carry on in the over head compartment hearing a crack happening as I did it. Not knowing what it was, I shrugged it off and made my way to my chair, shortly afterwards asked by a guy to switch spots so he can sit near his girlfriend. Both spots were aisle, so I didn't really care much for the change, so I smiled, switched spot, and successfully managed to smack my forehead into the overhead compartment and quoted Homer Simpson's "D'oh!"
7:03 - John F. Kennedy International Airport
The flight from Ft. Lauderdale to New York is about two hours. The first half hour was spent listening to music and amusing a little kid who was mesmerized by my hat prior to take off. I don't know if airlines secretly put chloroform into their air vents during flight, but I found myself shortly after passing out, as well as the majority of the passengers. After falling asleep for an hour, I spent the remaining time listening to some more music. Because of the pilot, which I'm fairly certain was an adrenaline junkie, we managed to land at 3:08 as oppose to the original 3:30 time. Probably looking like a tourist, I gawked at everything and tried to imagine where Tom Hank's character from "The Terminal" was. It took place in JFK, so I tried to find familiar spots, trying to take a picture of a mustard packet. Couldn't find a packet without having to go into the restaurants or bars so I just walked around saying "Moosetard" and feeling like a total boss.
Made a phone call back home that I made it safe and sound and told to stories that happened after my emotional wussification*. The head compartment thing made my mom proud because she said, as I quote, "That's my girl!" So after talking to her, my sister, and my dad for nearly 40 minutes, I walked around a bit the terminal, seeing as I had four hours to waste before boarding. As discussed with my mom on the phone, we decided that I should go to Chili's to get some Molten Chocolate Lava with some mudslides. Fajitas were a bonus (which I found hilarious because earlier that day we were talking about how one restaurant's fajitas was a thousand times better than Chili's).
As I made my way to Chili's, I decided to get as plastered* as I physically can so as that I can pass out on the 14 hour flight. I should mention, I'm typing this drunk. My mom and I also discussed that I should get so drunk, that it would put Kristin Wigs' "Bridesmaids" airplane scene to shame (according to my mom, I would end up recreating Melissa McCarthy's scene in the airplane with the air marshall). They didn't have mudslides, but they did have White Russians which I heard was really strong. Win.
After eating a good chunk of the cake and fajitas, I finished up my White Russian and felt like the Big Lebowski, minus the bowling and John Goodman. I looked around and wondered how many people drank to either drink away their misery or to get as sh*t plastered as they can so they can sleep the long flight ahead of them like me. There was this hispanic family on what seemed like a business trip laughing up and having a good time, one of the guy laughed like if Spongebob Squarepants was a fifty year old man and laughed every five minutes. But that aside, I figured they're drinking for happy reasons. Next to them was a college student raging out to this guy while drinking a beer, so she had to be rage drinking. Suddenly, the airport didn't feel much like an airport, and more like a starbucks / restaurants of sorts. Which I was alright with, a few minutes of not feeling homesick was good.
Trying not to look like a total drunk, I walked into a magazine store and bought two magazines and a water bottle. I smiled and thanked the store clerk and walked to my gate where I sat down and decided to type up this journal. The one thing that was bothering me about this terminal was that while it wants you buy for internet connection, you need the internet to get it. For $7 to use an an internet I felt was a bit silly and decided to charge my iPod after my previous use as well as start up typing my journal in text format. No internet meant no updating journal. And I didn't want to forget minor details until I got internet back, most likely in Israel.
So here I sit, on my butt on the floor charging my computer so it wouldn't die while I typed out this journal entry of day one. And already I have what I'm assuming, two pages worth of an entry. The plan on the plane is to wait an hour during the flight, swallow Advil PM and pass right out for, hopefully, a good chunk of the flight. I have my books and movies, but the less things to do and more sleep, the better. I know my neck will never forgive me cause of my sleep position, but hopefully I will be resourceful. I really do hate overnight flights… ugh.