Wednesday, June 01, 2011

To go, or not to no longer the question

for many ex-pats, this is the time of year that we start scouring the papers and combing through the internet sites to find reasonable flights, waiting 'on hold' for what seems like forever while some person who may or may even be able to understand what it is that we want, searches
 to find the answers.
yes, my friends,
it's almost the summer holiday.
it's time to think about going to our respective countries for the break.

when i was single, it really wasn't that big of a deal.
call an agency..get the flight..."i really don't care if i  go through seattle, los angeles, chicago....just get my ass home.... however"!
deposit the cash (because at that time, no credit cards and let's face it, tickets were crazy cheap!).
get to the airport in time for the flight..."any seat will do as long as it is on the aisle, thank you very much"...
get some alcohol as soon as we were in the air and
boom baby. i'm on my way home.

having kids put a whole 'nuther twist to this.
extra suitcases...bigger carry-ons..."please, give me time to get to the next flight with a little bit of time to spare, thank you very much".
plus they added to the final cost of the whole trip....and then some.
but we did it. 
it was a sacrifice made to be able to spend some much-needed time with  family and friends. 

but now...thanks to the rising cost of oil, they have now added a pretty hefty surcharge to each ticket purchased....i've checked a couple of places and some places are charging 
about $500 extra (give or take a few dollars)
for. each. ticket.

that's $1500....just for the surcharge.
i've checked a couple of places and tickets to denver run anywhere from
$1,300-$3,000....depending on how many layovers i'm willing to make.
let's face it, when it takes about 26 hours, from door to door, to get to my mom's house, any extra layovers can really make a girl craaaaanky.

let's say that i can scrounge together the money to buy the tickets...that's only part of what i have to do, really.  even though i'm gone for 3 or 4 weeks (which is the amount of time i like to be there), i've still got bills coming in here that have to be paid.  then....keeping in mind that i am not a salaried kind of teacher (i'm basically self-employed) and most classes pay at
end of the month...i wouldn't get very much money until the end of september.
and that right one of the main causes of stress when i go to the states...knowing that when i come back to japan, i'm faced with that as soon as we land. 
oh, i can have a fun time but..still..there is that dark cloud hanging over every patio time and restaurant outing while i'm there.
so....making the decision to postpone coming "home" for another year really wasn't one that took too terribly much time to make.
this making adult decisions sucks sometimes.
but really....
thanks to the internet, my blogging friends and...that social networking place i love so much,
i'm not so far away...not really.

and next year?
just try and stop me!


Shellie said...

Oh Debbie I am sorry you are not going to be able to come home this summer...If only I could win the lottery I would send you money to come home. Even tho we usually only get one day together during your visit. I really look forward to the craziness that happens in that few hours. I know there are so many people look forward to your visits as well as well as the many people you come in contact with on your travels. You touch so many peoples lives. Until next year I am sending you the {{{BIGGEST HUG}}} I can to get you through one more year. Luv you all. Shellie

Janet said...

Oh, Debbie, I know how tough it is, not getting home to see family and friends. But maybe you can take a few trips in Japan...maybe go to Okinawa?

Susan said...

Debbie, I will so miss the patio time! But I totally understand the decision. Doesn't it suck to be grown up, sometimes! I agree that with facebook and blogging it makes me feel closer to you, keeping touch on the computer, seeing picture of your family. Keep our fingers crossed for next year! Love you much!

AP said...

Sooo sorry you had to make such a tough decision. Maybe you could set up a paypal account and your friends and family can donate to the cause! It's as much a treat for us to see you as it is for you to be home :) I love you!

ChiTown Girl said...

I'm with AP. I would totally donate to the cause!!

In the meantime, let's have virtual margaritas Friday night. Well, ok, I'll be having REAL margaritas, but I'll be pretending you're there, too. :)

Yarni Gras! said...

I agree...winning the lottery would be a big help! I feel your pain...we've put off going on a real vacation now for years. I hope you find some fun things to do and take some staycations around Japan.

The Girl Next Door said...

So Sorry you can't make your trip home. I only lived abroad for 2 years and then only in Spain and I remember NEEDING to get home after only 6 months! Big Big Hugs and glad we are Internet Friends!!

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

Bummer. But next summer? Will rock!

Moxy Jane said...

Being a responsible, bill-paying adult is sometimes a total drag! BUT, I'm gonna start saving MY pennies so that next year when you DO come back over here, I don't miss you! I'd love to fly out to California;-)

dkuroiwa said...

thanks everyone for such wonderful comments....i will miss you all (even those of you i have never met!!) ;-D
virtual margarita parties? yeah baby.
keeping up here and on facebook? oh yeah.
and i would love to do that whole paypal thing, but...i'd be afraid to see the people who DIDN'T donate. that would make me sad.

much love and {{hugs}} to you all!!

Hula Girl at Heart said...

Hmmm...maybe a package from Kentucky soon would make it a little brighter?