I don’t think I have ever felt more scared/nervous than when I was approaching the check-in counter in the international part of LAX. Nervous first, because for some reason I always have that sinking feeling that I forgot something. Scared second, because I automatically jumped to the worst: that I’m not actually on that flight, or that they won’t let me go because I don’t have a visa. But it wasn’t like the nerves I got (and still get) before a game; the restlessness that can only be calmed by music, the butterflies that stay in my stomach until I get that first touch on the ball or solid tackle. No, these nerves were the kind where I felt sick to my stomach, my skin got hot all over, and clammy, which is never comfortable. It wasn’t a feeling I expected quite yet, nor one that I would welcome again, let alone wish upon someone else. I got through the checkpoint and even made it past security with a breeze, but I have to admit I called my dad just to hear a familiar voice and his reassurance. It was a weak moment, one that I wish would’ve waited until I was at least in Paris for a couple hours, if only for my pride’s sake. But, life goes on, and with it so does the realization that I’m gonna need to get a visa for when I’m in Spain…which I plan on taking care of as soon as I get there, (I really don’t feel like going all Bourne on the government, as fun as it looks on the big screen). So in the meantime, I’m just gonna milk Paris for all it’s worth and bask in the city of love!

As far as the flight goes, it’s hour 6 in my flight to France and my butt is really starting to get stiff. As I wake up a bit groggy from trying to sleep upright I take a look at the little airplane icon on the map and realize we just started flying over the Atlantic just east of Maine…in other words we still have a looooong way to go and I can’t decide if I’m hungry, thirsty or sleepy. Maybe a bit of all 3 but what’s new? Anyways, as I look a bit closer to our flight map, it amazes me how relatively close we are to Iceland…or maybe it’s Greenland…either way it hits me–I have this fierce longing to go to as many places as I can! Now, realistically, I’m not going to be able to see all the places I want to on this visit, but I understand that there is so much of the world that I haven’t even thought about. I mean of course Europe is the staple foreign destination for young adults and families, but that’s only One continent with tons of countries! there are 3 others I haven’t even really considered. I know this is just me getting miles ahead of myself, literally, and that I should really just focus on Europe, particularly France and Spain, but can you blame me? Before this summer, I had only been to one other country and that was Canada. Once or twice for soccer, and once on an Alaskan cruise for my grandparents’ 50th wedding anniversary. Speaking of wedding anniversaries… Happy 26th mom and dad!  Mom you’ve been married since you were 2! Dad that’s creepy. All in all, I think I’m finally starting to understand that despite the enormity of the world, it’s proximity is far closer than I’ve ever realized.