It is so very good to be home. The weather is about perfect, in fact, it is perfect. I forget how amazing Colorado is! I have been riding my bike every single day, which is to make it sound like I have been here some great amount of time already. I'm working on my fourth day. . .
Really, though, I have been in USA barely more than three days, and it might as well be three since I write this in the morning. Considering all that has happened for me since arriving, I feel like I've been here for two or three weeks.
Upon arrival on Friday night, my bicycle did not arrive with all my other luggage from Miami. I had picked it up in Miami to go through customs, but it did not arrive in Denver. Strike one! No big deal, it was still in Miami and scheduled to arrive the next morning. The best thing about lost or late luggage is that it is delivered directly to your house. Fine by me, they can lug around that 60lb. box, making me feel like I got my $112 worth for the extra luggage fee.
On Saturday, I promptly woke up(whatever that means)and rode to meet my friend to attend our friend's memorial service, the whole reason I arrived early anyway. In a stunning setting in the mountains of Colorado Springs, we all remembered our friend whom died a tragic death on his mission to disappear in the mountains of southern Colorado to starve himself to death. The reception following was equally as beautiful, if not extremely trying as I was one of the few to see the very last video he made of himself before he died. Seeing someone you care about make a final goodbye to all after forty days of not eating is heart wrenching. Needless to say I did not sleep much on Saturday night. I am comforted by the fact that he died in a beautiful setting, on his own terms. He taught many people many things, was brilliant, talented, hilarious, and unfortunately, troubled. You will be missed Branko.
Upon arriving home on Saturday night, I was informed that things with my sister are totally up in the air with her Peace Corps service due to violence in her country. What this means for me is that I am now likely taking another solo trip. This trip I have planned to Africa was to visit and travel with her, but if she is removed from her country due to dangerous situations, I will be traveling alone. Just another major life change all in one day, no big deal(!!!).
Still on Saturday. Barely back 24 hours at this point. Late at night, I met up with somebody whom I was very close with last summer before I left to do this whole Guatemala thing. As I was away the past eight months, I realized how strong my feelings are for this person and we met up to talk it out. I had been holding these things in for a while and was very excited to see him and to get it off my chest, finally! Well, an hour later, I walked away, with tears in my eyes, heart broken. We had been in very close contact while I was away and I was certain he felt the same way. The last month before I came home he suddenly became very distant, and confirmed to me that yes, he had felt the same way, but things for him had changed, and he was moving on. I guess that now I also have no choice but to move on.
Nothing like taking care of business all at once though. All this happening in my first day back is overwhelming, but prevents it from being dragged out. There is something to be said for that.
In light of information about my sister, I'm thinking to b-line it to Spain upon arrival to Morocco. Kinda had my fill of third world countries right now, and hey, I speak the language. Woo hoo for Spanish! Really, though, the last thing I want right now is to wander a Muslim desert country in the middle of Ramadan, the Muslim month of fasting, where everything shuts down. I know more details than I am dishing, out of respect for my sister's request for privacy on this matter.
I have never, ever, ever, had a trip go as planned, and the changes almost always come right before I leave. This is nothing new for me to deal with, and honestly I am excited. I am looking forward to spending time alone, believe it or not. And I am totally stoked to go to Spain. I have always wanted to go, but Europe is so expensive I have avoided it. This is some fateful way of getting me there anyways. Maybe I won't come back ;) Who knows what will happen for me as a result of the life-changing day I went through upon arrival last week . . .
Until then, however, I am enjoying time with my family, friends, and road bike. I have a family reunion coming up in Keystone the last week of August, which I am looking forward to immensely. I will desperately try to maintain a relatively low profile to avoid any more major happenings. I've been here three and a half days, I have three weeks more to go, I already need a break.