Wednesday, July 28, 2010


posted by Alan
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It's been about a month since the last post on here. The main reason being that we weren't in China for the past three weeks. We were blessed with a nice, long, restful vacation BACK home in NYC. I thought about posting while we were in New York, but I realized that people in China can't see the blog and we'll see everyone at home anyway. We just arrived back in Shanghai two nights ago. It's great being back, but jetlag is a butt-kicker.

One of the great joys of living abroad is coming home. Relationships just seem that much more special and you realize that closeness has nothing to do with distance. Loved seeing the family, all the babies (born and not yet born), playin ball with my boys, going back to CEMCQ (my home church), going to a Mets game and enjoying the heatwave. Coming from the humidity of Shanghai, the NYC heatwave felt wonderful.

The second best part about living abroad is coming home and binge eating guilt-free because you're on "vacation." Both my dad and dad-in-law can work the grill, so we had BBQ galore. Steak, chicken, ribs, oh yes. I already miss it. Also NY pizza, Taco Bell, White Castle, Shake Shack, Arby's, Crif Dog, Rutger's Grease Trucks, deli sandwiches, Chinese take-out (not the same as here) and good old home cooking. I ate so much that even my dad remarked at how much I was eating. He's used to my monstrous appetite and even this impressed (or maybe disgusted) him.

Fat Darrell at Rutgers Grease Trucks; BBQ at the Chan House; BBQ at the Gong House

Mom's Chicken Parm; NYC Hot Dogs

Special thanks to my mom and cousins Jennifer and Shirley for putting together an awesome baby shower for Daisy. And thanks to everyone for coming and all the generous gifts. Afterwards, Daisy just kept mentioning to me (more than once) that she felt so loved.

Click here to see more pictures from Daisy's NYC Baby Shower: Daisy's Baby Shower

This last trip home was different than any other before it. It felt like we never left New York. It instantly felt like home, still knew where everything was, how everything worked and things were just really easy and comfortable. Although I've lived in China for extended periods before, it now feels like both Shanghai AND New York are home. It feels like we belong in both places. No awkward transition periods. It was a peculiar and very welcoming feeling.

The kicker was watching the New York skyline out of the window of the airplane at JFK and the Shanghai skyline out of the window of the airport bus just hours later. They're both incredible and both felt so familiar. This world is an incredible place, with so much out there to see and do. But when it comes down to it, it's not so big at all.