09.03.2009 - 09.03.2009
It was a weird feeling. My overseas adventure was ending. A gamut of emotions flooded me. It felt surreal. Did the last year really happen? And even though I was exhausted from my travels, on every level, I could not sleep my last night in Spain.
I was anxious to get back, to see friends and family, to share my experiences, but part of me wanted to keep going. I feel programmed to get up and go each morning, looking for the next spot, the next adventure, but for now, I was heading back to New York City.
Everything went as planned, like the 19 flights before, and eight hours later, I was back in the Apple. My Ohio boys were picking me up the following morning, so I was in no hurry. I took the air train out of JFK and connected with the metro into Manhatten. I walked the remaining blocks to the Filter office, where I was crashing for the night.
It was after office hours, so I found the doorman Ronaldo, who was on the lookout for me, and he hooked me up with the keys. I walked through the building lobby, towards the set of elevators. I was tuckered out. I was set on an early night, slowly adjusting back to life in the States. "Hey vagabond!" came from behind me. I turned and half nodded at Ronaldo, shrugging off the comment with a smile. I pressed the elevator button. "Hey vagabond!" Another half turn and nod. But this time, out of nowhere, came the newlyweds - Jesse and Amanda Jensen! A Bagavagabond brother and his beautiful wife. I was overwhelmed. Ecstatic. Surprised. Confused.
I missed their wedding back in April. I was bummed about the absence, but excited about meeting them up in Europe during their extended vagabonding honeymoon. In the end, our times and agendas didn't meet up. But why were they here in NYC? Oh, that's easy, they had just moved to Brooklyn two days prior to live out their acting dreams and in correspondence with the crew in LA (namely Pat), found out that I was arriving in the city and crashing at the Filter office. So like the amazing friends they are, they hopped on the metro, beat me to the office by about five minutes and totally surprised this weary and weathered traveler.
I was alive again. I snapped out of my travel-logged trance instantly. Emotions and excitement stemmed from both parties. We were full of questions, stories and smiles. Man, it was exactly what I needed!
We quickly made our way out to the streets and found the most American eatery we could. We ordered local brewed beers, burgers and pulled-pork sandwiches. We shared the highlights of the past year and looked toward the future. We hung out for hours, like old times, like old friends.
Jesse and Amanda treated me to dinner and to the best return-to-the-States evening I could have asked for. I was back and better than ever.