Are You Sure He is Coming?
A mountain bike, two suitcases, and a carry-on were all I had heading from Salt Lake City to Hamburg; I was nineteen. When I look back, I still cannot believe I did this; I was giving up everything, I had quit my studies for true love and adventure. Was I crazy? Only time would tell.
I have this habit of being chatty. So rather than sit and worry on the plane I decided to tell the little old lady sitting next to me my life story (seriously at nineteen I thought I was interesting). We had hours in the air, it was pre in-seat movie days, and I believe she was happy to talk, I hope so.
While I collected my luggage, heart pounding, she stayed by my side. We pushed my luggage and my bike through the gates together. I couldn't wait to see my boyfriend and as I scanned the crowd anxiously....nothing; he wasn't there. The little old lady went to hug her son, turned back and saw me standing there alone, searching the crowd. She went into Mom panic mode and came to me with her son. She sweetly asked me, "Is this boyfriend of yours really coming? Are you sure about him?" I answered, "Yes, I am sure he will come." I was, however, panicking as I stood there alone. I could tell she thought I had been stood up and I was feeling like Cary Grant on the top of the Empire State Building in An Affair to Remember....alone and in love. I think my new found friend could tell, she smiled and said, "How about my son and I just wait with you for a bit." It seemed like we waited for an eternity and then all of the sudden a very sweaty, running and panicked boyfriend turned the corner to sweep me into his arms to kiss me. There had been a traffic jam.
I guess I can be happy he showed up late, her son, a dancer in the musical Cat's, offered us free tickets to the show for the very next week. This encounter was the beginning of my life and adventures in Europe. Was I crazy? Yes, but a bit of madness is good! I have a wonderful life. Here is to all the parents that let their kids live their lives and yes, be a bit crazy!
—Allison Ochs Social Worker M.S.W. , Coach, Expat, Mother of three, Wife