Back in Black (and Gold!)

Hey everyone! It’s been a while since I’ve written here! I need my space. Or I need some free time in the midst of moving 4,000 miles and preparing for classes, a new apartment, and 2 upcoming jobs (but wait, there’s more!). My last post was all about the cuisine of Hawaii, and since then, things have changed. Many things.

My wonderful punk of a sister came to visit me in Hawaii and harass me, and helped me move out at the beginning of August. I worked up until almost my last day there, and Erika (my sister) got to relax while I brought her free Starbucks on the beach. Talk about a mooch!

Apart from doing some more vacation-ey stuff in Honolulu, it was tough wrapping things up and leaving the beautiful island behind, as well as all the wonderful people I’d met there.

The first leg of our journey back began at Honolulu International Airport, as we waited on our flight directly to Las Vegas. As it turns out, the airport also runs on Hawaiian time, and we waited an extra two hours before taking off, which meant we wouldn’t get to Vegas until around 11:30pm. We didn’t have problems with this; we just wanted to get to our hotel and get to sleep so we could wake up early and drive to the Hoover Dam. Unfortunately, for some reason they didn’t cycle our checked bags through the carousel when we disembarked, and we spent a solid hour trying to find someone to get ours out of the locked Allegiant office.

While we ultimately had to skip the dam in the morning to get our bags and check in for our flights on time instead, we were still grateful to have gotten to the mainland safely, and made light of the whole affair.

When Erika’s flight left to continue her vacation in California, mine left shortly after to head back to Chicago. I was stoked to be on a (comparably) much shorter flight, headed back to the midwest to see my family again. Plus, the sunset above the clouds was a beautiful sight:IMG_2730IMG_2732.jpgWe didn’t touch down in Chicago until around 11:30pm (again!), and I was happily greeted outside baggage claim by my two devoted  (but tired) parents. We loaded up my bags, and headed to our hotel for the night to get a solid night’s sleep.

In the morning, we did another family favorite activity: went shopping at IKEA. While us Swedes have many things to be proud of, there’s nothing more fantastic than cheap furniture and Swedish meatballs all sold under one roof. A paradise on par with Hawaii. I had a lot of catching up to do for my new apartment in Iowa City, but showed enough restraint to only get a sturdy, wooden desk for the year. I wish I could say my parents showed the same restraint… 🙂

We got done at IKEA around noon that Friday, and drove on back to Bellevue to regroup. After a couple hours, we had the truck loaded up again above the cab, and were all set for moving me to Iowa City the next day. I was blessed with another warm welcome that evening – an Iowan sunset on our farm. It’s hard to say whether sunsets are more beautiful in Hawaii or Iowa, but it was stunning regardless.IMG_2779.jpg

On Saturday, we were fired up and ready to go back to Iowa City, and got there in the late morning to a crowded parking lot full of other students moving into my apartment complex. Thankfully I had my bestie, Alaina, to help move in, although we didn’t really trust her with anything too heavy, since she’s probably half my weight.

We got everything hauled up to my apartment, conferred with my roommate, Macy, on the layout, and had everything (roughly) laid out in less than an hour. What I somehow forgot from my apartment tour in February was just how small my room actually is. The queen bed might have been overkill, as it took up around 81.3% of the room. (Pics and blog on apartment to come, when it’s decent looking!)

In between driving back and forth from Bellevue to Iowa City, it’s been amazing seeing so many friends and family again. Hawaii was fun for a summer, and I met some really great people there, but I’m completely content to be back in Iowa City again.

Classes start in one week, and most of my friends are moving back this week, so right now is a great time to be a Hawkeye. I’m so glad to be back (in black (and gold!)) and am more than ready for my insane schedule this year.

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