I'm so excited. I'm already planning on spending 5 weeks in the States in August and September, but today we booked our trip for December. Christmas in Colorado! My husband and I met in Colorado two years ago at Christmas. Last year we spent Christmas in Florida with weather hotter than Cairo. So you can only imagine how thrilled I am at the chance to spend Christmas with snow. Actually, I'm just thrilled at the chance to be in some nice cold weather again.
Next month I will leave Cairo and fly to Indiana where I will spend one week visiting my son. In addition to this I am looking forward to driving, having a real cup of coffee, Taco Bell, a frozen margarita, walking up and down the aisles in WalMart and Lowes, and hanging out in Borders. Just to name a few.
Then from there I fly to Florida and spend one month there in Sarasota visiting my mother and grandmother. I will probably do what I did when I was there last year and run out to the mailbox everyday to get the mail. (You would do it to if you spent the last year and a half in a country with no mail delivery.) I will head back to Cairo at the end of September.
In December I get to turn around and do it all over again. The trip in December will be so much better. For one, my husband will be going with me (but I'll miss the dog and cat). It will be Christmas (our favorite holiday). And it will be COLD in Colorado. We will fly from Cairo, looking like idiots carrying our heavy winter coats, to New York. Now, I mention this because there is a funny story behind it. Last December we flew from Cairo to JFK in New York, were supposed to have a short layover in New York and then fly to Florida. We decided that even though it was cold in New York, we had no reason to leave the airport so decided to leave our winter coats at home. After all we would not need them in Florida. I was wearing a long sleeve shirt and my husband was, too but they were light. Well to make a long story short, we ended up missing our connecting flight to Florida and got rescheduled for the next morning on a flight out of LaGuardia. So we had to move from JFK to LaGuardia in a taxi freezing our asses off. As if that was not bad enough, when we arrived in LaGuardia at 10 pm, we found all the counters closed and were told we could not move into the gate area until 4 am the earliest. So we had to spend the night sleeping on benches in the entrance lobby right next to the doors that kept opening and closing all night. Since we only had carry-ons with us and had not checked any luggage, we put on 2 or 3 of the shirts we had packed. The cleaning guys came through and passed out airline blankets (paper thin) to everyone who was sleeping on benches and luggage carts. We had been given some by the guy at the counter as a consolation prize for missing our flight. We wrapped ourselves up in the blankets and then put more t-shirts on top of that. We really looked like a bunch of assholes. People must have been wondering "who the hell flies to New York in December wearing only a cotton shirt"? All the restaurants were in a different terminal and the one thing that was in our terminal - Starbucks - was closed.
Being the tough New Yorker that I am, and being so happy to be in cold weather I decided that I would brave the elements and go out for a smoke. I didn't feel a thing. I was frozen solid in 30 seconds flat. At about 4 am I found Starbucks open and bought 2 Venti Lattes for us to sit in. We managed to finally get out of New York after being on standby for 3 flights and barely making it onto the one we ended up on. (Unfortunately the airline made a mistake and cancelled our boarding passes. We had to bump 2 other people off the flight to get back on.)
So this year, needless to say, we won't make the same mistake again. We will be bringing our winter coats, scarves, gloves, blankets, and pillows. After we arrive in New York we will be flying to Salt Lake City, Utah. From there (Insha'Allah and weather permitting) we will fly to Denver. In Denver we'll rent a car and drive to Colorado Springs.
We'll spend Christmas in Colorado Springs with a colleague of my husband (and she is a fantastic cook, I might add). After that we will drive south into New Mexico. I'm hoping to meet up with my best friend from high school who is living there now. After that we will drive through New Mexico, Texas, Louisiana, Alabama, and Georgia into Florida.
I'm really looking forward to that part because I am dying to get out on the open road and drive. You just can't enjoy driving in Egypt even if you can find an open road. Also, I've never been in New Mexico, Texas or Louisiana so even though I lived in the States my whole life, I will actually feel as if I'm in a new place. We'll spend the last week in Florida and then fly back off to Cairo. We will have an 11 hour layover in New York and plan to go into Midtown for a few hours. This time we will be properly dressed for sure.
What a great way to start the New Year.
Map of Amman from 1956 - Here’s a really cool map from 1956. For more information, head over to Tobzeh. How small the city was.
5 weeks ago