My Boxing Day special

I’ve had some interesting Boxing Days in my past, but perhaps today will rank as one of the strangest.
This morning, we woke up when The Monkey — who has become very adept at waking up before Mommy and Daddy — came marching into our room somewhere around 7:00. We all lollygagged before getting up.
That’s when I knew something was wrong. The room was spinning.
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'Twas a couple of nights before Christmas

Not a lot of posts in a while, I know. We’ve been pretty busy since returning to Canada barely two weeks ago. We arrived late on the 8th, having spent 19 hours in transit from Costa Rica. It was dark, extremely cold, and covered in snow.
But it was home.
The next morning, we moved back into our home here in Calgary. We started seeing things we hadn’t seen since before the Monkey was even conceived. (Since then, we’ve unpacked virtually everything, and put together about a half-dozen large boxes of stuff we’re giving away.
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You can never go home again

When I was a kid, I heard the phrase “you can never go home again”, but never understood it. I mean, I went home every day after school, so what was wrong with that? It wasn’t until I went to university that I started to appreciate it — I was regularly amazed at how much my hometown seemed to change whenever I was away at school.
When my father died in 2002, the term gained a whole new meaning for me. Suddenly, I couldn’t even go home. My home was where my family lived, which was now only in the past. When my mother moved away, my home became a sightseeing stop.
Then I moved home from Costa Rica, to a house we own. Man, talk about change of perspective.
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The trip home

Well, Monkey, we’re home now. I know it doesn’t seem like it to you, because you’ve lived in three different homes since you were born. But this house, the one in Calgary (where we’re currently adjusting to serious sub-zero temperatures and drying out) is a home we hope you’ll come to know and love.
It’s not Costa Rica. It’s not always warm. It’s not filled with the sounds of parakeets, or tropical rainstorms, or filled with Spanish-speaking voices. This is the Great White North. It’s chilly for most of the year, leaves are seen for only five months, and the only monkeys you’ll see are at the zoo. It’s going to be an adjustment for you, and for Mommy and I, too.
It was a long road to get here.
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Adios, Costa Rica

Eighteen months ago, I set foot in Costa Rica. Not as a tourist (despite what my visa said), but to make a new life abroad. My family (Alex, Monkey, and Asia the Cat) would join me a month later. One big, happy family, living less than 10 degrees latitude from the equator. Life in paradise.
Assuming the rest has gone to plan (I’m pre-publishing this entry), the moment this is visible to the world is the moment I leave Costa Rica … likely forever. It’s a bittersweet moment in my life, probably the happiest and saddest moment I can think of, really. I’m happy to go home, but I’m sad it didn’t end the way I had wanted.
There’s very little limonada in this story, unfortunately.
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T-minus one week and counting

One week from … well, right now, our plane leaves Juan Santamaria Airport, bound for Houston. If all our cards fall into place (which, so far, they are — I just hope they keep falling!), we’ll leave in good order. We’re not perfect yet, but we’re getting there.
The biggest point, really, is still the car. Sigh. Continue reading “T-minus one week and counting”