Cruising the internet the other day:
Hmmm, summer clothes for the kids, check. Summer clothes for me. . . um, not so much.
Looking for some delicious summer recipes that don't take a BILLION years to make. . .
(The weather is warming up here. Can you tell?)
Sandals, a new bikini maybe? Nah, not yet. Still 15 lbs. to lose.
A mini break to someplace? Any place? Nope. That would require lots of work for me, and no fun without my husband.
How about. . . and there it was. A crappy quality picture -probably taken with an old iPhone- of me sitting with a friend at Sonic, sipping a Diet Cherry Limeade.
I'm not sure what clinched it, if it was the friend in the picture, or the Cherry Limeade, probably both, but it's official. I miss home. I've been feeling it coming on for about a week now, but this really did it. I usually miss home a lot more when my husband is gone, and there are specific times of year when I really, really miss home. This year though, things are just a bit different.
I'm not just feeling nostalgic for the place where I grew up. I'm feeling it for places in time no matter where in the world I happened to be. Nights on the town in Savannah with our friends Jen & Lamont, backyard BBQ's with neighbors at Fort Benning, and yes, even Fayetteville with my friend Heather, sitting at the Sonic. I know that a few years from now, after our time on Okinawa is over, I'll feel some nostalgia for this place too.
But this time it was the Cherry Limeade, the friend, the feelings of peace and consistency that I know I felt when that picture was taken. For a moment I completely forgot where I was. I was determined to call up a friend, meet at Sonic with our kids, and order a Cherry Limeade! There has been a Sonic, and Cherry Limeade available in every place I've lived for the last decade.
But then. . . the horror! Oh the horror! Reality dawned an instant later. I'm in Japan. There is no Sonic here. Hence, no Cherry Limeade. Since I can't see my old friends, it's clearly time to dig up a copy cat recipe for that one. It's amazing how something so simple as a frivolous drink can make me miss things back in the states so much.
Now I had a plan. I would make my favorite summer drink here to Japan. Off to the 100 Yen store to find some cheap reusable travel cups with straws, and the commissary to buy my ingredients. I know I'm not getting off this island to visit home anytime soon, so I'm going to make the best of what nostalgia brings. I've decided I'm going not going to miss home. I'm going to have it here.
I can't build a Sonic, and I can't fly my friends out here. So I'll put a kiddie pool in our yard, grab a beach umbrella, add some friends and their kids, and best of all, my homemade cherry limeade. . . only this year since I don't have to drive home, maybe I'll have a little something extra in it too!
Oh, and I'm going to buy that bikini after all.