Because Grandpa Porter served in the armed forces, he and grandma have space reserved at the Alexandria National Cemetery but because this is the military and the government and other perfectly valid and important reasons, her funeral is just now scheduled for 29 March 2020.
We were given the specific date a few weeks ago.
At first I wasn’t going to go.
Then all the planets aligned and I was going to go.
Since I was taking my five year old with me, I researched CoronaVirus Disease / COVID-19 more thoroughly than when I was just travelling around Europe for work and I’ll admit one of my favourite sources was, of course, John Oliver.
FYI – you can’t get the coronavirus by eating Chinese food. And gargling with bleach is not the most ideal preventative method.
Yesterday I flew back from the States, jokingly to escape the Area 51 raid, but seriously cause it was the end of vacation and since said vacation was two weeks taking care of Boy Twin and Visiting Family, I am taking the next four work days off.
While I don’t normally do this, I have a ton of Paid Time Off accrued from when I was pregnant with twins and sick nearly every single day and all that vacation rolled over and since the project is mostly quiet in July and I’m also taking off for the week of Gish, I’m pretty much all of July.
My colleagues are going to forget what I look like!
But seriously there are three major projects I’m working on in my copious free time and I’m going to take the next few days to dive into them.
When at home, we speak English, but in public, as much as possible, I try to speak Dutch which just means that I’m damn good at ordering a cup of coffee and buying my train ticket at the kiosk – when I travel the use of Dutch explodes quite a bit between the hotel / commute / airport.
When we first moved to the Netherlands seven years ago I used to get headaches because my brain would try to serve up Japanese as my second language instead of going straight to Dutch. Every time I’d try to practice, my brain would translate Dutch to Japanese to English and back again.
For about six months.
One day I woke up and the Japanese was gone.
Like, GONE gone.
Whenever I’d try to think of some common phrase, my brain gave me Dutch.
But then we had kids and I really want them to be familiar with some Japanese, so I started re-learning via Duolingo. And also, because my partner and our three children are Swedish, I thought now would be a great time to fold in Swedish as well.
So every day I complete at least one module of all three languages within the app, never imagining there would be a situation when I used more than two languages within a short period of time.
Now, part of the not travelling AT ALL is because I was coming back from maternity leave and didn’t want to travel while the twins were so young and part of the travelling WAY TOO MUCH is because dayum if I didn’t just plan for that so poorly but also I really missed travel and speaking and doing All The Things.
Let’s make 2019 much more balanced and not have entire quarters of no travel NOR have entire quarters of all the travel, mkay?
Also, my partner will kill me, understandably, kthxbye. Cause three kids and one parent is ROUGH.
But first, let’s look back at that travel insanity and Learn The Lessons.
As an aside, I started to write up ALL of the travel reports at once and got completely overwhelmed, so this is ONLY THE FIRST TWO.