Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Whirlwind US review

It would be an understatement to say we're just tired. Not only have we been bouncing from airport to airport to get back to NZ, but we also spent several weeks back in the US. The trip was a whirlwind of seeing friends and family that I have not seen in several years. The last time I was back was 2.5 years ago. That was a whirlwind trip as well because after I got off the flight I had an email with a job offer that started in 2 weeks. So I didn't get to reconnect with that many people as it was packing house and trying to stay on the New Zealand clock.

Anyway, back to this trip. We tried to see our friend Steve right away in Saint Louis, but it didn't pan out. He is currently living in Missouri and interning during the week in St Louis. I could retell the tale of how a lot of rib places close early and that I didn't get ribs until Sunday.

  It was one of my desired meals in the US. We then picked up Sara the following day before heading to the Moll family reunion. There ended up being just under 40 people in attendance. It was also roughly 100 degrees and very humid. It probably felt worse to us as we just left a high of 50 and some frosty mornings.

We flew to Minneapolis on Sunday and were greeted by Jake, Asa, and June at the airport. The kids have changed quite a bit since I've seen them last. Asa was working on a loose tooth, but the entire time I was back, it didn't come out. We loaded our bags and picked Becky up before eating dinner at Punch. After which we dropped Beth off to see some of her friends at her former local watering hole in NE Minneapolis, The Palace. We then topped the night off with Izzy's ice cream and playing tag in a park.

The next morning we drove out to South Dakota to see the rest of the family. As well as some friends. We had a lovely dinner over at my friend Melissa's house where her husband grilled for us. Her sister Miranda and her boy even showed up. Their father used to teach me Taekwondo. Then my parents threw a pizza and pool party and invited over all the relatives in town. I got to see my other brothers and sister as well as some of my nephews and nieces. I stopped over at my sisters house to play peanut gallery to my nephew and his friends playing 2nd Edition D&D. It reminded me a lot of my high school years.

Next was a quick over night trip to Sioux Falls to see Otis, Zerf, and Geffre. Otis has sired a large rambunctious family. 2 dogs, twin 3 year olds, a 4 year old , and a step-son of 11. There was also a cousin over. So the noise level was off the charts. I don't think our lives could be more different. So we ended up grilling out and shooting the shit until the early morning. If you're a guy and ever meet Gabe, make sure your boys or pay the price. You have to be on DEFCON 5 around that one.

Now it is back to Minneapolis, where we spent the bulk of our time back. Beth left a little early to go see some friends in Vegas. Minneapolis involved seeing a lot of friends and family, consuming too much awesome food, riding my bike with friends, trail running, playing paintball, sailing, randomly running into an old high school friend twice (once at the trail running race and the other time at Vertical Endeavors for indoor climbing), and playing with Asa and June. I could go into more detail like above, but to rehash each day right now feels like a  pretty draining exercise. To those that I didn't get to see, I'm sorry. There is only so much I can cram into a short amount of time. Next time you will be first and those I did get to see count yourself lucky.  For the few that I saw multiple times, don't rub it in or others may get jealous.

I do have a video that I'm editing together of us sailing. Both Asa and June took a turn operating the camera, so I'm sure the video will be extra special. I know that Asa liked taking 30 FPS action shots. So I have to make some gifs out of some of those. I'll add the photos and video later as its been a week since we got back.

Now its back to work, training, and planning our Ninja Adventures. We have Lake Waikaremoana Great Walk planned for the end of October.

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