For the next 2 hours, I will attempt to recall my entire trip and every incident of even minor importance within it.
Leaving Miami ~ ~ ~ ~
I had packed 2 days before I had to leave. I remember I had quite some trouble finding Dan’s dad a gift. I went to about…3 sports authoritys (a sports shop) to find Dan a new hoodie. I didn’t find one in the end…I went out with Michael, and we spoke of the things I might do in England. Drinking came up quite a lot. I imagined myself passing out just before dancing on top of table with my bra on my head. I wasn’t as excited as I thought I’d be though. Going to the gyno was a pain. And wearing those damn patches…the doctor said I was good though. Cos I went to him before I did anything. I was happy then. I remember Maribel telling Jorge “you should be proud that she’s even considering going to a doctor beforehand”. She added “thoughtless bastard” at the end too. The day we had to leave was rainy. I was afraid we wouldn’t get there on time, I was quite nervous. Jorge shrugged it off of course, laughing at me. When we got to the airport, dad took out the luggage, and gave me a hug that nearly suffocated me. He patted Jorge on the back, gave him a short hug and waved. Jorge said to me “you’re screwed now. I have no intention of helping you with those bags. I told you not to bring so much shit with you”. He had only brought 1 bag with him. He hurried along in front of me as I struggled with my rubbish. I had 2 suitcases and 2 bags. One of the suitcases was just presents. He larger one held half of all my belongings. We walked around and asked people where we should stand. After a few people, we ended up being directed to a line that was at least a 15 minute walk to the end. I didn’t think we would get there on time. I met a man from…I forget where he was from. I believe he was from Spain or Argentina. He was quite nice and helped me with my bags while Jorge walked about looking for something. We spoke for a while, and after I told him I was going to England, he looked through his pocket and pulled out about 2 pounds. He said he wouldn’t need them anymore, and gave them to me. I thought it was generous of him. Soon after, there was a guard nearby controlling the line. I asked him if he thought we would make it in the plane, he said he doubted it. I was disappointed then, and went back upset to Jorge to tell him we weren’t going to make it. He got angry, as did the other man. Out of desperation, I went up to another woman who was checking papers. I lied to her and told her I had been in the line for 3 hours and others whom had just arrived were in front of me. “I wish I could help you, but if I do id get fired. I did it before with some people, and they ended up calling the police because people were skipping others in line. I’m very sorry….” she said. When I insisted, she said she felt bad for some people, and that she wished she could do something more. She was a nice woman, seemed genuine. Again, I reported to Jorge. Angry and short-fused, he went up to the woman himself. He raised his voice and accused her of not wanting to help. The woman got defensive, and when she was retaliating, Jorge incinuated that she should “behave” or he’d get her fired. He dragged me back towards someone else, and they directed us to another line. While we were waiting, I remembered the woman’s words. “I like helping people, but I can’t…”. “ill be back in a sec”, and I went over to the woman. She looked at me, slightly worried. She probably thought I planned to be nasty. I said “my uncle is arrogant and insensitive. He’s like that with everyone, so please don’t be feel bad…I apologize on his behalf”. She looked happy when I said that. “thank you for your compassion” she said. She smiled and had this grateful look. Made me happy. I walked back to Jorge. Just then he said “could you believe that woman? She could’ve helped us if she wanted to, I know it! Bitch..”. I nodded and patted him on the back. I felt above him then.
Soon after, we got on the plane. I didn’t have a very good view from the window but I managed to be content with it. It started to rain and rain, and then we heard the pilot saying we weren’t going to take off until he received permission to. After about half an hour or so, we finally took off. I watched as the city shrunk, still nervous because I thought we might lose the other plane. The plane ride was dull. In about 3 hours, we arrived in Chicago. And we quickly went to a desk and asked if our plane had gone. And so it did. I was furious then. Jorge kept saying it was for a reason, and to not worry. But I was even more infuriated when I found out we’d leave at 6:00pm the next day. After anger came sadness. And after I bought the most expensive personal pizza I’ve ever had in my short life, we prepared to get on a bus to Holiday Inn. I sat in one of the buses to eat. When I spoke to my dad, I told him to notify Dan and his parents. When he rang me back, he said they had been waiting for me. That made my heart sink. And after our bus arrived, I sat in it and looked out the big windows. Jorge looked around like a proper tourist. I sat quietly as some tears dropped. It was dark, so no one could see. When we arrived at the hotel, we went straight to our rooms, and Jorge grew hungry. We pulled out a menu and decided to get some room service. We thought the prices were too high, but he said he was hungry enough to pay and not mind. I was already full from the pizza, but Jorge insisted I should join him. So I did. And because of that I woke up in the middle of the night feeling thirsty and rubbish. So I got up quietly, thinking that Jorge wouldn’t hear me. I was still asleep so I’m sure I must’ve looked like a zombie. My eyes opened a little more when I saw the indoor jungle they had. After about 10 minutes, I ran into a woman. I think I said something caveman-ish. “Skar thirsty. Where water? Me want”. she told me to look for some machines that I had run into before without noticing. The only thing there that wasn’t saturated in sugar was some tea. So I got that and walked back upstairs to the room. To my surprise, the lights were on and Jorge was sat up holding his head in his hands. I asked what was up and Jorge said that he couldn’t sleep. It seems we both have trouble sleeping in foreign beds. “this is all your fault! You dragged me all the way to Chicago for fucks sake” he said laughing. We spoke for a while and made jokes, and after that we tried to sleep again.
The next day, we decided to make the most of it and get to know the city. We ate breakfast and got on the bus the hotel provided. We started to walk towards a subway. I thought there was much to much walking and I began to sweat. I felt as if I was being made to walk from Hialeah to Miami Lakes under a cloudless sky in June. The subway was just like it was in the films - dark and smelly with tramps and weirdos walking about. I asked a woman when the bus would come. Though she said it was every 40 minutes, I assumed I misunderstood since 5 minutes later she walked up towards it. I followed her into it, and a second after I got on it the doors closed. I proceeded to wetting myself and watch my uncle try to run behind the bus. I’m sure I would’ve laughed if I wasn’t wondering how the hell I’d turn back. When I could no longer see him, I stood there worrying. I looked at the woman. She was sitting in front of me, reading the paper. I intelligently guessed because of her reaction to the situation that it was not as grave as I thought it was. So I said “I assume that since I’m the only one not pissing themselves that this is not as bad as it seems to me?” . without lifting her head away from the text, she smiled and said “nah. Just sit down until he next stop”. laughing at myself I said “heh I was dead scared then”. She laughed at me and continued reading. And that was my first experience with public transportation.
When I got back to Jorge I felt like I did that day in the supermarket when I was 5. I got lost for 5 minutes and started to cry and when I got back to him I felt embarrassed and scared. We walked around some more, and I got to the point where I was so hot and smelly that I was embarrassed of going into any shops. The city itself had not made a very good impression on me and I desperately wanted to leave. In the airport I bought a shirt that said “Chicago” on it. I always thought it was stupid to buy a shirt with the name of a city on it. But I made an exception, for the shirt did not reek of fat construction workers. I noticed that all the people going on the plane were white. I giggled with excitement. When I got on the plane, I knew there was a long, dull trip ahead. But I didn’t care. I kept looking at the little boys. Wondering what resemblance they might have to my children with Dan. The most prominent thing in my mind from the ride there was a very cold, almost painful, Canada. Might have been Greenland. I sat there shivering for about 45 minutes. Since the people in the middle rows weren’t cold, I assumed it was just the outside temperature. As opposed to my first guess - that the pilot wanted to freeze us all to death. I was anxious and impatient, yet too tired to show it. I looked around me and wondered when the plane would stop. And after 2 or 3 hours of agony the pilot mentioned we were getting very close. I waited for the clouds to part but they did not. Layer over layer over layer. For a moment, it made me feel as if I had ventured off into some unknown land shrouded in mystery. And a mystery it was for what I thought was too long. But as we descended just a little more, the clouds turned into fog-like and then there it was, clear and green. I knew I was going to do it - I had imagined myself doing it before. But this time it came without thought, without prior notice. Tears began falling from my eyes as I watched the land beneath me, the land I had longed to see for what seemed forever. Walking out of the plane, my eyes were fixated on the long windows looking out towards a field. I kept wondering what or who might lie beyond it. I snapped out of my trance and realized I was about to see my fiancé’s parents. I was about to make a first impression, and whatever I did after this point seemed crucial to me at the time. I wondered what sort of idiocies I would do, what sort of arguments I’d get into with Dan, and, strangely, I wondered if I would come back a virgin. When it seemed as though we were walking towards a meeting place, I pushed Jorge forwards and asked him to go in front of me. I kept looking behind my shoulder to see where they’d show up from, but they didn’t. And when I reached the outside of the terminal, I found myself hiding from anyone who looked remotely familiar. But after time passed and no one was around to greet me, fear turned into impatience and instead of hiding I sought him out but to no avail. Jorge decided he wanted to smoke, so I followed and stood nervously next to him. Soon he pointed someone out in the distance and I turned around. From afar I saw Daniel, and someone next to him who was surely his sister. And ah, the next bit in the story embarrasses me. I need not say it, eh? Though I felt incredibly embarrassed, and I remembered my earlier thoughts.
Sarah was a dear. She looked sweet and pretty, with eyes similar to Dan’s. At the time my mind was more consumed with Daniel, his smell, his smile. Always so comforting. I admit, I was a bit terrified of meeting his dad. I heard he wasn’t one of the most agreeable people. But he seemed to be a nice enough person. I remember when I sat in the car, I felt cold and excited. The sky was bright yet clouded and the atmosphere smelled different. There was always something about the way he held me. He smelled pleasant and his body was warm. His hands were soft and his arms around me felt so calming. I looked next to me and saw Sarah. I thought it was best to bring myself down from the clouds and be more friendly. That time I noticed she was indeed very pretty. Cute, still like a little girl. And from that day on I would say to her randomly, smiling “pretty!!” . I liked her reaction as well.
Ah so now I arrive at nana’s. This was the person I would live with for the next few weeks, and I was eager yet nervous. I wanted to be liked. She was quite friendly and nice, but she came across as the stereotypical English woman. Serious and educated, but nice and friendly. After speaking to her shortly, she told Daniel to take me upstairs to see my room. And there I saw an opportunity to kiss him. I hurried up the stairs and I cornered him against a rail (or wall, whatever that was) and kissed him. He told me to stop but when my lips touched his, he kissed back. It was then that I remembered his taste. It happens every time. I seem to vaguely remember his lips when we are apart, often trying to recall certain instances but I never get it right. But when I’m with him again it all comes back as if everything else was a dream. He showed me our bed, our room. The second he said “our” I wanted to have him. But he dragged me downstairs again and we spoke to our parents some. Nan was making breakfast apparently. Me, Jorge and Dan ate, if I remember correctly. I was sitting at a funny angle and Nan said “sit properly Scarlett”, and I could imagine what Jorge was thinking, something close to mockery.
Soon after that, I remember I was sitting down, finishing what I was eating. I heard the door opening but I paid little attention to it, until I heard the word “mum”. I looked up and for a second I was scared, until she rushed towards me and hugged me tight like I hoped she would one day. She seemed genuinely happy to see me, and the moment was better than I had expected. When I looked at her I noticed she was very similar to Leslie. Her eyes were the same, but kinder and sweeter. Her smile always had a way of making me feel loved even though she wasn’t smiling at me. She was thin and pretty and I wondered if I could ever emulate her beauty. Until now I still hope I can get closer to her, maybe one day she can call me her daughter. When I called her at work one day
We went to see Jorge’s hotel soon after that. I wondered if the inside was actually as nice as it was in the pictures I had seen. When we walked in, there was the stereotypical bell boy, complete with white gloves and a funny suit. We ran over to Jorge’s room, looking at everything along the way. I thought it’d be funny to annoy Jorge by asking for thank yous constantly. The room was nice enough, I particularly liked the bathroom and the windows.
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