Category Archives: trips

tonight’s gonna be a good night

Since I moved to LA 3 years ago this Monday – (WHOA!) – I’ve taken quite a few cross country trips. I love to travel, by plane or by car. My ideal weekend involves 8 hours in a car, minimum. I have no problem driving as long as I possibly can, sometimes to the demise of my friends’ patience. College friends should have memories of my taking the long way home from Ocean City b/c I hated the PA turnpike so much (what a miserable road).

Despite the love for driving, to get home requires more flying than driving, which has of course increased my frequent flier miles exponentially. Flights from LA to Boston, Pittsburgh, Erie, St. Paul, Phoenix and Indianapolis are all in my repertoire. I love meeting a new airport, to the chagrin of bank account.

But I’m in an awkward position with my frequent flier miles. For one, I’m not sure how much longer I’ll live on the West Coast. Some days I think I could do this for the rest of my life. Other days I can’t imagine another year. It depends so much on professional decisions I have yet to determine (let’s NOT get into that, m’kay?).

The problem? I’m a bit more than 1,000 miles away from hitting a free flight with one airline, and one roundtrip ticket away from the same with another. But in order to get home for the holidays, I won’t have enough of those miles – I grew up in one of those towns that getting a free ticket into is the biggest joke ever. When your home airport has 6 gates, you know you’re selections for travel are minimal at best.

So friends, should I just sit on the miles? Buy the 2000 to get me over the limit and have a $10 flight to visit friends? Hold the miles and take advantage of the benefits of traveling with those miles accrued (free checked luggage, early boarding, etc). Or just keep adding up miles and whenever (if ever) I move, be able to travel back to LA cheaply?

You be the judge. (Funny, I think I just made my decision. But tell me please your thoughts!)

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everytime you go away

I’m about to endeavor on a trip I never imagined (and frankly attempted to avoid in 2006): a cross-country road trip with my mother. It’s a long story – one I’ll save for a day when I’m not attempting a laundry list of events, including but not limited to:

– Bed Bath and Beyond
– Finishing cleaning my room
– Packing for a road trip with – need I remind you?
– Lunch with a friend
– Selling books back
– Bank trips

You know, the fun stuff in life, right?

I’m blaming twitter for this song now being (as apropos as it may) stuck in my head. Thanks DB.

paul young – every time you go away

too much, too much…

The problem with making grandiose statements like I did below is that you have to follow up your actions with your words. As is the case every other time I try to make change, I get symbolically slapped in the face. Wednesday afternoon I started to feel a little “not great.” By Thursday I was tugging at my ears like a dog chases a cat. By Thursday night, I could have cared less how many friend were in my apartment, how funny The Office may or may not have been, and I simply wanted to sleep with the hope of my ear’s pain going bye-bye. 

I’m a weird patient (read: finicky). Sometimes I like to tell no one I feel like crap. Othertimes, I want attention, love, affection and peace. Ironically – every time I got attention for this damn ear infection, I wanted to run in a corner and hide. I had no one who really knew me around me this entire weekend – I was with new or brand new friends for classes. Not in the same familiar town. I nearly OD’d on pain killers Saturday morning – did you know that you should not take 13 advil in a 7 hour window. Because I did, and I certainly looked not “well.”

At least I was justified, when the oh so kind Physician’s Asst. looked in my right ear and said, “oh gosh! How long has it been this bad!?” “Uh. 3 days. 2 this bad. I can’t really handle it much more – I’m going crazy.” “Well, uh,  yeah. That’s really bad.” 5 minute later he tells me that I’m probably going to have to go to an Ear, Nose and Throat specialist because “that’s just not normal.” Awesome. Thank goodness for the cheap health insurance at Fuller, eh?

And so, my patience. My joy. My thrill at the year to come – certainly has felt crushed in the last few days. All I really wanted was a friend to come check in on me, see if I’m okay. I’ve been subtlely reminded that community is a two-way street, and I can’t quite figure out what I’ve managed to create that’s made me so isolated and alone lately. I hate it, to be honest. I have no constancy, no really close friend here anymore. I feel forgotten, annoying, or not cool enough to hang out with anymore. And all I really want is a knock on the door and a friend to say, ‘you ok?’ not ‘I can’t believe you…” I make mistakes. We all do. But I guess I just need some added grace today (oh, and copious amounts of vicodin.) To clarify – the ear infection, is not improving. At this point, I’m hoping this ringing I’ve heard for the last 5 days leaves by June. Oy.

hold me close

Going out of town for a large period of time (read: anything more than 4 days) always results in the same amount of panic with the same amount of time remaining as finals. I have no idea why, but somehow around 12 hours before the trip hits, I have this insatiable desire to clean, organize, oh, and pack. Right, that detail. At 2:54 a.m., I cannot find one of the Christmas gifts I bought for family, and I have a mess of books and papers sitting on the floor. 

Thus yet another reminder that my organize chaos helps no one – especially right before holiday travels.

T-minus 16 hours til I land in the Keystone state’s NW corner. Here’s to the adventure I’ve been needing back at home, eh? (Yes, my hometown is close to Canada, so there!)

they will keep you in good company

I took a little drive to LAX and back again today (seriously, I need to put a taxi sign on my car – maybe limo? Nah, that’s not right…). I got to (yes, I said got, not had) drop off my roommate and her brand new husband, Steve, on the way to their honeymoon in Mexico, and got to spend an hour catching up with them and hearing some of the funny stories post-reception or during that I missed out on, and caught them up on some of the people that I met that are important in their lives. It was really a blast to just laugh with them, see the tremendous amount of weight removed from both of their shoulders as they finally hit that “we’re married, we get a week long vacation, oh and we’re married” face. The smiles and laughter in the car, let alone their affection is infectious (in a totally good way, of course).

So on my drive back, after a brief stop in Inglewood for gas (note to self: NEVER do that again) I was on my way back for a tour (cuz you know, I can’t ever have a wide open schedule) and had some time to just process. Normally if I were driving at this time in the morning in LA, I’d call the East Coast – it’s lunch time, people are sometimes free from work, etc. But for some reason, I wasn’t remotely compelled to be distracted. I listened to the radio, but found myself often lost in my own thoughts – which was a pleasant distraction from the typical, “I have to do this, this, this, this, this and that” routine I’ve been so accustomed to lately. LIfe has been chaotically busy and Tuesday has been the day I had been anticipating for weeks. Dare I say months? Yes. it’s true.

Anyway, to the point of this. As I sat in the car, in traffic, looking at the ugly dang smog everywhere in front of me, listening to news reports about the train accident in LA on Friday, I thought about how many amazing people I have in my life, and what a privilege it has been to be a part of or at some many weddings in the past few years. I’ve missed so many more, which has killed me each time. But the last few weeks, in the midst of asinine amounts of craziness, have been such a respite in catching up with some of these newly and no-so-newlyweds. And what I realized more than anything that I’ve been direly blessed by, as actually been meeting the people so important to these friends in the process of weddings. It’s so fun, honestly.

For instance, Vera’s whole family is a hoot and a half. Seriously. I mean, seriously. Every time I go to see her, I love how her brother’s are all just goofballs and a half, but have hearts of gold. And of course, they’re goofballs. And the fact that they still remember that I live in California is amazing to me – I mean, seriously, we aren’t like BFFs or anything. And I love that one of Vera’s nieces found me on facebook and still contacts me all the time on the good ol’ FB chat. HILARIOUS! That girl kills me! At her batchelorette, I met some wives of her husband’s friends – these women were so funny and amazing. I loved re-catching up with them at the wedding a few days later.

Then of course this weekend, I got to spend a bunch of time with Steve’s mom and nana, actually. I know, random, right? I was hanging out at Anna’s mom’s place the day of the wedding with the bridesmaids, and I’d imagine that for the mother of the groom, sometimes it’s an interesting place to be – so it was totally fun to hear her tell me stories about Steve and Catherine as kids, and just laugh and crack some jokes with them. At the rehearsal dinner, I re-met people who are good friends of Anna and Steve’s at Fuller, and yet really, Jon and Shannon and I barely knew each other. I had a blast laughing with them at Steve’s family table. So funny – laughed so hard. And one of Anna’s best friends from growing up, Sarah. Girl was so much fun! Between the wedding and the reception, I haven’t laughed to hard in a while. Seriously.

While it sounds like I’m recapping just two weddings, the moral of the story: I’m blessed with some amazing friends, and even more amazing extended families as a result. Left and right, people have loved, cared for, and cried with me over the years – I could write a pages upon pages about all of you (and you know I would if I didn’t have somewhere to be in 20 minutes). But know that each of you reading this post have touched me in small and large ways – and I’m honored and blessed to know you and call you friends. Rock on, friends! 🙂

young friend :::: brooke waggoner

only happy in the sun

I was home 3 separate times in 2007, starting with a very random, and short trip home in August. Fresh off V’s wedding, I headed up the turnpike with Beth when I got a message from my mom saying something along the lines of, “are you sure you’re not coming home???” I don’t know, but a combination of feelings overtook me and I was messaging with mom for a ride home.

Well anyway, thanksgiving for a week and now Christmas, here I am. Sitting up, wide awake at 2 am. It took about 24-hours for me to realize that yes, my parents and I have changed in thinking. The past few days have been the oh so subtle, and not at all sweet reminder of how much I have grown and changed in the last year. Certainly moving twice helps. New environments. New people. But schnikes! Wow, we’re not in the same places at all. I dare say a word when my father makes green comments, or when my mother makes political comments about Obama. I found myself wondering today if it was that I disagree with them, or if I just don’t like the way they present their opinions more.

I hope, pray, direly in all truth, that I show some tact when I offer opinions, or in the very least, that I am wise in how I share. I read something once (clearly I was avoiding a paper) that said that personality is less likely to admit my disgust for someone’s opinion if I really care about them. Which makes me feel good – at least I care about my parents. But this actually is making my skin crawl, all the comments.

PS. Another great “oh my gosh, I can’t believe I’m really home” moment? Watching a movie referring to sex with my father. Every teen has moments like this, but this time, the giddy glee-filled laugh from my father freaked me out a bit too much. I’m home, and I’m not sure how I feel about it, folks.

(PS do you know what the official alcohol of the US is? I do.)

call me bad

I’m a bit scared of myself lately. I was so desperately anticipating the end of this last quarter. Daily it felt like something crashed near me: a friendship, a paper, a computer, a bank account, a thought. BOOM. Gone. Maybe Dec. 8th would hold a clean slate. Silly, girl… of course not.

I took this totally random road trip to Las Vegas yesterday with 4 friends. I love those people. They crack me up. I was sitting there about 20 minutes in the back seat of Dan’s car, and just started to laugh. I was surrounded by 4 brilliant people. Brilliant. I’m not just talking IQs, but people with so many gifts, talents, and passions that are nothing like me. They all have learned to interact with God, who they are madly love, yet earnestly struggle with how to live out that relationship practically at times.

Introversion hits me about once every few months. I suddenly just want to be in a corner, cowering away from anyone and everyone, begging that no one look at me. Yet another irony that is Libby. I love attention, and yet hate it when I do get it. I love to speak my mind, be in front of people, blah blah blah, and yet when I have no control over what is being said about me, and when I get no opportunity for response, my cheeks blush, I fidget, and I hide. Hello, control issues!

Introversion arrived Friday. And not like “kind of” but like an ugly beast. I think it started during the end of finals, but wow, I was kind of shocked by it Friday in the car. Scared might be a better description of my experience. Too bad all that I wanted was to be at home in my bedroom in tears. Good thing we were 20 minutes into the drive when I realized it.

Instead of feeling energized being with people, or even excited for a break, I found myself angry with myself. Angry for not looking like everybody else, angry for not being smart, angry for not not not not not… reality #1 sunk in: I’m never going to be good enough for my own expectations. Ugh. Humanity slapped me in the face somewhere around Baker, CA.

I wonder why or how this happens, or why I let little things get to me (answer: stress, exhaustion, and life). I hate those moments when you’re reminded of your own personal crap. The reminder that you’re not perfect occasionally is not at all welcomed. Oh well.