Spoiler alert: I don’t make New Years resolutions, and this isn’t the story of how I started this year with a life changing step forward. I personally think people should stick to their guns rather than be chameleons or focusing on half-assed resolutions that, statistically speaking, they likely won’t end up keeping anyhow. I figure if I managed to keep my head above water for another year, I’ll call it a success.
I spent my New Years Eve on a plane, flying back to Seattle after traveling to Indianapolis to see my friends and family for the holidays, and somehow a holiday that has never meant a thing to me signified that time was quickly slipping through my fingers.
I watched in disgust as the twenty-something couple sitting next to me on the plane was taking duck face selfies because, as the girl had stated, “How will people possibly know what we are doing on New Years Eve if we don’t put it on Facebook with a picture? They won’t know that our New Years Eve is worse than theirs sitting on a couch.”
I thought about letting them know that it was ideal for me to be drinking alone on a plane on New Years Eve until they sat next to me and ruined it all with their nonstop inane conversations and picture taking. I could only pray that I made it in the background of a few of them as “bitchy aisle seater.” Drinking alone would have been a much more pleasant outcome.
It was a packed 10 days in Indianapolis, filled with family, friends, and a lot of laughter. I am notorious for not wanting to schedule my life out too far in advanced, but I had a serious calendar going, squeezing in coffees and dinners wherever I could fit them in and still couldn’t quite manage to see as much of everyone as I wanted to.
I spent Christmas with my the Lauck side of my family, which is always bittersweet. I miss them like crazy. These are my people, through and through, who laugh with me (or at me, depending on circumstances) and all of my Seattle shenanigans.
Christmas quickly culminates to embracing our “Lauckaholic” statuses with plenty of booze and laughter and listening to stories of past generations. Whether telling stories of Lauck Funeral Home when it was still within our family, or stories of my great grandmother, affectionately called “Oobie,” who was a Bohemian in the truest sense of the word, an afternoon with the Laucks never fails to entertain and enlighten.
We are quick to dish out shit to one another for a laugh, but I get my fierce loyalty from them as well. My relatives are supportive of me on every move and every overseas adventure I’ve had, whether they agree with what I’m doing or not. I consider myself truly blessed to have such amazing people in my life who stand by me no matter what.
I’ve learned that somewhere along the line, people who enter my life learn that travel takes precedence to nearly every decision I make. It takes a special kind of person to accept that, let me mosey around every which way, and then pick up right where we left off when I come back. And somehow I’ve managed to find a whole slew of these people, who prevent me from upholding a “weird loner” status whenever I’m around and actually embrace me and my quirks.
I went back to Bloomington, the city I went to college in and visited with my aunt and uncle as they took me around to see everything that had changed since I had last been in town.
I met up with friends I haven’t seen in months and realized how much time had passed since I last saw them. I have a friend whose first child is nearly two, and shocked the shit out of me by yelling, “Hi Aunt Carly” when I walked through the door. When I left for Seattle, he wasn’t saying too much and now he’s a chatterbox, speaking in full sentences. That same friend is getting ready to have her second child, and I realized that by the time I see her again, who knows what her first kid will be doing (he’d be swearing like a sailor if Aunt Carly stuck around for too long I’m sure), and there will be another baby in the picture as well.
I met up with my college roommate, Katie, who I still frequently talk to and keep in touch with, but haven’t seen in person in ages. We caught up on life and laughed about all of the random adventures we’d had together. Like that time we were in Boston and couldn’t get a cab home from a U2 concert, so we took a random hotel van back into town, hoping no one would ask us for our room keys. After being stuck in traffic for 2 hours, Katie decided that she couldn’t be bothered to walk the five blocks home and keep up my carefully crafted lie about us losing our room keys and asked the driver if he could be so kind as to drop us off at her apartment because we’d had a long night.
I met up with my friends from my old job, even though retail is in its worst season. They made time for two of my favorite activities: drinking wine and running my mouth. It was hilarious hearing everyone’s stories, and so wonderful to catch up with everyone again.
My dad was the only one off one day and agreed to drive me to go buy shoes after we visited my grandma. As we were waiting to check out, I heard the sales lady yell, “I’ll take the next shoe lover please!” I cringed at the phrase, but knew from my days of ridiculous Macy’s protocol that she was likely required to speak so unnaturally.
I quickly turned to face my dad, who I already expected to find the moment equally as annoying, but was less likely to sit on his mouth about it.
“I’m going to ask her where I should check out if I’m a shoe liker and not a shoe lover.”
I knew he would and pleaded with him not to make her feel bad and hate her life more than she probably already did. He respected my wishes, which is a rare Paul Lauck move when it comes to public humiliation, but I attribute it to me being home for such a short span of time.
So much had changed since I last left, even though it doesn’t feel like that much time has passed at all. But then there are certain people that are constants through this journey that make it easier to deal with coming back and realizing that time is passing by more quickly than I would like it to.
Before I knew it, my time was up and I was saying goodbye, ripped away from the circle of trust I had taken years to construct only to spend 11 hours flying back to Seattle, sitting next to a man on the first flight who asked where I was headed even though I was intensely focused on my book and not in the mood for a four hour plane chat. Especially after he asked me if I moved to Seattle because I’m so pale.
As my second plane landed and I waited for my luggage, I sighed, wondering what happened to the time. I missed my family and friends already, but they are great about staying in touch. And I couldn’t keep traveling around if I didn’t have such awesome people in my life. People who understand me as much as I understand them.
I walked in my front door five minutes before midnight and fell asleep on my couch. This morning, I woke up to all things Seattle again. The hustle and bustle of the city. Almost stepping in a pile of vomit by the bus stop. A questionable wet spot on the bus next to me I tried to tell myself couldn’t be urine, therefore succeeding in making myself believe that was the only possible explanation for it.
I don’t have any pictures of anyone from my trip to put in this blog as much as I would love to, but I realized, after taking a walk around Green Lake in this place that is my temporary home, I was too busy actually spending time with my family and friends. A little tidbit of info maybe that couple next to me on the second plane could have taken a hint about rather than snapping so many selfies.