Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Day 2-Strange Planet

Day two on strange planet starts off quite well. We have so many choices for lunch, Mexican, Chinese, Janpanese, Thai, BBQ, TGiF, Subway, the list goes on and on. We are not used to these choices but it is kind of fun. We  finally choose Chipotle. Shad orders a small lemonade and is handed a huge cup. He hands it back correcting the mistake. "I said small please." The guy behind the counter says, "That is a small" We all laugh out loud. It is hilarious to us but he has no idea why we are laughing. We will have many of these inside jokes I'm sure.

In the afternoon, despite feeling jet leg coming on, we decide we really need to gather some essential supplies. At this point we make a tactical error and head to super Walmart. In retrospect I see the foolishness of this move but at the time it seemed to make sense.

Sean drops the boys and I off and says he will find me. "Are you sure", I ask, "it looks like a small city in there. We could wander around for days and never see each other". I'll find you he says firmly. I get my huge cart and start going up and down the aisles. I start in the food section as I've heard they have a gluten free section where I could get some things for Shad but I can't find it. I can't find anything.

On our visits to strange planet, I've always enjoyed going to Walmart. Great prices and I can grab the select goodies and out I go. This time it is totally different. This is where I live now. As I wander up and down the isles my cart stays relatively empty. I pass by hundreds of inedible things in 50 different brands. Somewhere between passing the 15 brands of ranch dressing and arriving at the 2 brands of disgusting pasta choices a lump starts to rise in my throut. How am I going to feed my family? I turn down another isle and see Sean wheeling  a cart towards me. He has one thing in his cart and notices I have very little in mine. “There’s nothing to eat here,” he says. “I know” I croak, and then I start to cry and I can’t stop. Sean, seeing this could get really ugly and embarrass the the boys, trys to cheer my up. There are other places these people find food, we just came to the wrong place. Don’t worry, we will find something. Then he pulls out a bag he has been hiding behind his back and says look, they’ve invented risotto chips. Now I’m laughing again. They’ve never eaten true risotto in their life. Otherwise they would know you make arancini out of leftover risotto, not chips.


  1. I don't know which visual picture is making me laugh more...Sean with the risotto chips or him drinking coffee out of a soup bowl. You know, I think WalMart probably makes more returning ex-pats cry than we can possibly imagine. Keep blogging, friend. I think your experience is so normal...just not often written about. Miss you!

  2. all these posts about the "strange planet" cause me to think of the scripture that says "we are citizens of heaven." i don't think we will ever fit in here. we will always feel out of place. always be missing home. i'm sure you grasp that longing even more coming from italy to the u.s.

    and yes, why do they serve our coffee in soup bowls?

    may God go before and behind each of you as you transition here. may he lead you, be near you, and lavish his love on you.