In about 1 week I’ll be heading to the airport to hop on a plane that will take me halfway around the world to enjoy the holidays with my family in the states. Unfortunately, my wife’s visa still isn’t finished (a big no-thanks to the government for that) so I’ll be going by myself. I’ll make it up to her though with our super awesome 4-day stay in Bali booked for April. The whole duration of my US trip will be from Dec 14 to Jan 8 and I’ve made an extensive shopping list full of gifts, and things I need. Some things on this list include:
Wii U plus lots of games- I love Nintendo and the Wii U just kind of sings to me. Also, it seems more approachable that the other consoles so my wife, who is more of a casual gamer, can play games with me and I don’t have to listen to a bunch of moaning about playing games all day. Also going to pick up a 3DS XL.
Shoes- I swear to God, shoes in my size are almost impossible to find, even in Hong Kong or Guangzhou’s Africa Town. If by some divine miracle I can find some that are the right size, the quality is usually terrible and the shoe is painful to wear. In 2 years I’ve only bought one pair of shoes that fit well and they feel like someone is chewing on my feet.
Candy- Treats like Willy Wonka bars, Milky Ways, Hot Tamales, York Peppermint Patties, Joly Ranchers, and all that other good stuff are nowhere to be found and it’s true that expats start to feel nostalgic about the weirdest things. I get mad cravings for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups about once a week but alas, there are none to be had.
Hot Sauce- I’m a sucker for Tobasco Sauce and Texas Pete. The local pepper sauces don’t have the same level of pain to them as these American classics.
Cigars- I can smoke Cubans whenever I want, and indeed I have, perhaps tonight. But, I still miss my Backwoods Cigars and my Black and Mild’s. I’ll be loading up on packs of smokes to bring back and enjoy at my leisure.
Wine- I’m a wine guy. I love it. However, most of the wine in China is either crap or fake, usually fake. My favorite wine is from Georgia (the country) and is made of pomegranates. I’ll have to find a special crate to bring it back in if I pick some up.
But of course it’s not all about shopping and resupplying. Most of my family will also be coming home which will be great since I’ve only been able to talk to a handful of them via Skype and email. I have been sending some cool postcards every now and then but it’s time to catch up face to face.
Some other things I’d like to do in this time are:
-Eat a bunch of dirty burgers at Sonic’s and have some beef and bean burritos and quesadillas at Taco Bell.
-Go to the Texaco and get a big Icee.
-Hang out with my friends, get hammered, then go pig out at the IHOP at 4am.
-Go to River Street in Savannah and hit up the bars.
-Take photos of my hometown to show my students in China.
-Catch up on all the cool games I’ve missed out on.
-Get back in shape with my running shoes and go jogging in the mornings or evenings.
-Go hunting with my dad and brothers.
-Enjoy the benefits of a (relatively) free and open internet.
-Eat my grandmother’s homemade food and make copies of her cookbooks.
-Drive around in my car.
-Surprise everyone with my super cool Christmas gifts from China.