Pursuing the expatriate life in Italy–“Whoa, big ol’ jet airliner, don’t carry me too far away”—thank you, Steve Miller Band

Okay, so my big ol’ jet airliner is carrying me too far away. Not too far, though. Just to Italy, to be exact. Is Italy too far? I don’t think so. But it’s far enough. Yet those lyrics seem apropos at this very moment as I sit on an Aer Lingus flight winging me from Chicago to Dublin. I still have about three hours to go before we land and I really can’t sleep. It’s currently 11:00 p.m.

So far, the trip seems to be moving quite quickly. The Chicago flight was over before I knew it and O’Hare Airport wasn’t nearly as intimidating as I expected it to be. I had flown through O’Hare on a return flight from Italy back in ’06 and it wasn’t too intimidating then, either. This time around I was just concerned that I would have enough time to get from one terminal to another. I was chagrined when I realized I had left my newly purchased book somewhere in the terminal. Now I don’t have anything to read unless I want to look back over old blog postings. How self-obsessed would that be? (The first sixty put me to sleep.)

I lucked out on this flight, though. It’s not close to being sold out. There are empty seats everywhere that I was not aware of. The gal at the ticket counter made it sound like there were very few aisle seats. I always choose an aisle seat for my muscular, virile physique—big chest, broad shoulders, long legs, etc. Jeez, I think I’m turning myself on.

Anyway, I had conked out from the pain meds for my back and, after eating a quite decent dinner, realized there were empty seats all over the place. I couldn’t believe no one else was taking advantage of this good fortune. So, I grabbed two seats next to each other. Now, rather than getting too cozy with the hairy, portly gentleman next to my old seat, I can stretch out my muscular, virile physique—big chest, long legs and all.

This leg of the flight seems to be quite good. We’ve experienced absolutely no turbulence. That right there qualifies this as a good flight in my books. For me turbulence is one of those wretched things I hate in this life. It’s right up there with Snooki, reality TV and kids who wear their jeans halfway off their ass exposing their butt cheeks to a nauseated world.

So, now after my nap, I’m wide awake. My back was giving me fits at O’Hare so I took a second Valium. It has taken quite a bit of the edge off the pain so I can function a bit better. However, even with two seats to myself, I still feel like I’m in the hose of a vacuum cleaner. And this will not help the tightness and pain. For now, though, I’m doing okay. Still got another Valium left along with a few Vicodin. Couple those with a Scotch on the rocks and I’m golden.

Uh oh, some turbulence. Be still my bowels. I will keep you apprised.

OK, back to writing.

I had the chance to read a few FB postings while waiting at O’Hare Airport. It’s funny, several people have written that they hope I find what I’m looking for while I’m in Italy. There’s a part of me that wants to be a bit offended by that, like I’m some kale-chewing, jos-stick sniffing, sun-worshipping Esalen fruitcake. But I can’t be offended. They’re right. I am searching. I want what everyone else seems to have. Not a beautiful home, kids, spouse, etc. I want to belong. What does that entail? Will Italy provide that for me? Will I allow Italy to provide that for me or will I keep it at arm’s length, unsure how to accept it?

So many questions. But, as I’ve said before, I’m going to go to Italy and just let the chips fall where they may. I’m not going to force anything but rather see where God takes me. It’s ironic how I feel more at peace knowing that I’m not trying to control everything. I have no safety net, unless you consider Him to be just that. And, after the way I’ve screwed up my life over the decades, I’m ready to hand over the reigns.

So, Steve Miller Band, this is my favorite song of yours. Your jet airliner is hurtling through the air at 35,000 feet, six hundred miles per hour taking me to a new life in Europe. Dichotomously, it’s not here that I’ve got to stay.






2 thoughts on “Pursuing the expatriate life in Italy–“Whoa, big ol’ jet airliner, don’t carry me too far away”—thank you, Steve Miller Band

  1. Hi Bob,

    Lately the Lord has been telling me to be “Present” and enjoy what we have today. I get so wrap up in the future and all the anxiety and fears that comes with it that I forget to enjoy the present.
    Love reading your blog……..you have a way with words.

    Have a blessed “present” day my friend!


  2. Big ole jet airliner…
    Carry me to my home.
    Big ole jet airline…
    ’cause it’s there that I belong.

    I think that most people our age long to be with family, with those who love us just as we are. Family is sometimes biological, or family can be chosen, but one thing is for sure: we need to give love a chance. In the words of Jackson Brown–

    Oh, won’t you stay? just a little bit longer?

    And you do need to give love a chance. Stay. Just say you will.

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