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Just as I began this Brazilian adventure, I ended it “in rainbows,” with Radiohead providing the soundtrack to the touchdown back into my beloved country. I crack a smile in my bleary-eyed pre-dawn arrival as I watched the glo-stick man juggle his wands of directional power. It reminded me of that scene in Airplane, you know the one. At least I’m not the only one amused to be here.

I looked around at all my beautifully disheveled traveling companions, and thought, “This is going to be such a great day!” It’s good to be home.

. . . . .

Now that I’ve been back in the States for ..oh, let’s say a week or so…I’ve suddenly and seamlessly fallen back into a routine-less routine of sorts, at my grandparents’ house in Austin, TX. Like a gentle transition back into the familiar (not ready for the Midwestern cold yet, I’m afraid), I’m easing myself back into the “old” life (or, the old life I never actually had). It’s not hard at all. Re-living summer vacations, now with my sister living here, I am a kid again, staying up late, watching movies, neglecting this blog. In fact, I shouldn’t be enjoying this as much as I am, should I?

I talked to my grandmother’s “Book Club” about Brazil last week, while showing pictures of some of the highlights, and while talking I felt as if the whole Big Experiment was a dream, some sort of intelligence I’d gotten while I blinked, because I couldn’t have really been gone for a year, could I? But yet, I think I was. Is a year such a short period of time or do we just not measure it so exactly when we stay in the same place? Nearly the same thing happened after talking to Chelsea, one of the BFF’s, whom I haven’t seen for over a year and a half. The phone call fast-forwarded those commercials of the “dream” and I was back in LA eating ice cream with her, the last time we parted ways. No time had passed at all.

Save for the out-of-season bronzed tan, the bug bite on my leg that just won’t go away!, I have no proof, really, of anything being out of the ordinary–unless you count my uncanny craving for Mexican food…where have you been all my life?!?!–and I’m resigned to start over. I’m zero-ed out, officially a vagabond, with no official “home” but where my suitcase rests, and I’m using these days to sort through what has been a gigantic adventure for the last year. Photos, writings, everything that got tucked away or saved, half-finished–they are all subject to these new “purpose-giving” attempts. What to do with myself while waiting? It’s a time to consider where I’ve been, but more to consider where I want to go. There are so many options, many of them very good, but where, oh where, is that glo-stick guy to keep me focused when I need him?  You’re cleared for clearance, Clarence. Surely you can’t be serious….

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