(676) Traveling back to the US to get my kitty

From Buffalo...

On Saturday at around 1:30PM, I loaded my kitty, Leo into his carrier. He protested, but I did what I had to do. We drove to the airport and got there a little after 2.

I checked in to my first flight (separate airlines so they could only issue the first part of my ticket) and said goodbye to my dad. I asked him to wait for me to call to make sure I got through security okay with my kitty. I went through security and when I reached the first agent, I explained that I had my cat with me and if it were possible to go to a private room to get screened. They allowed it and asked if I would like to be screened that way or normal. I said it didn't matter to me, so a female agent took my kitty and I went through security like normal. I got my stuff and went with the officer to the room. I took Leo out of the carrier (although he was very hesitant to come out) and another agent took the carrier and put it through the x-ray. They were so nice about the whole thing. When we were done, we went to find our gate. It was about an hour before the plane started boarding. I was able to get on wifi and talk to my husband a little.

To Philadelphia...

We got to Philadelphia and I had to get to the terminal on the opposite side. We landed in Terminal F and I had to get to Terminal A. Terminal F is disconnected from the rest of the airport and the only way to get there is a shuttle. Luckily, I was able to get to the shuttle just as the attendant said "last call". I got to the gate as they started to board. Luckily, this was the international flight, so the line was really long to board. I still had to get my boarding pass and pay for the kitty. It took a while for the attendant to get my receipt (he had to call it in to a colleague), but I got it in time and waited in line to board.

Leo was very well behaved during the flight. I didn't hear him at all. Every so often he would move in his carrier so I knew he was doing okay. The carrier didn't fit under the seat in front of me, so it took my leg space. I wasn't really able to get up the entire flight because I was in the middle seat and I didn't want to disturb the person next to me. Next time, I think I will look into flying first class. That's a long flight not to be able to move.

To Germany...

We arrived in Frankfurt, Germany after about 8 hours. We had to take a shuttle to the arriving area for international flights. The shuttle probably took about 15 minutes. We then had to go through passport control which took about 15-20 minutes. Then we had to go through security AGAIN. The line was so long, that probably took 30 minutes. By the time I saw a clock it was about 10:15 and the boarding started for my next flight at 10. I ran/walked to my gate, which was hard to do since I had a 12lb cat. When I got to the gate that was on my ticket, it wasn't showing my flight, so I checked the board again and it was 2 gates over. I ran to that gate and the agent kinda gave me a hard time asking me why I was late. I'm like WTF! I didn't even have time to pee. It wasn't my fault that it takes so damn long to go through security. By the time I sat down on the plane I was so sweaty and shaky because I hadn't really eaten in a while.

I did have a good conversation with the person next to me. The ice was broken when I asked if he had any cat allergies. We talked for about an hour. I don't even know his name. I wish I had exchanged contact information.

To Italy

It was so great to see my husband again and to have someone else carry Leo!

A couple of things I have learned:

  • If possible, try not to fly Economy on the long flights. It's so uncomfortable. If you do, get an aisle seat so you can get up whenever without feeling like you are disturbing another person. 
  • Give yourself at least 2 hours between layovers
  • It cost me approximately $300 for the cat
  • Have the health certificate and vet records, even though I was never asked for them
And now to repeat the process for Toad


(674) So unhappy

This is extremely personal, but I need to get this out.

I wish my husband would take the initiative and talk to me... On March 3, I left Italy to go back to the US to get one of my cats. The next day, Mike left to go to training (2 hours away from where we live). He go back from training this past Friday and I'll be in the US until next Saturday. Anyway, while he was in training, he would get home pretty early and now he's just at home. He doesn't IM me even though we are both signed in to google chat and both shown as available. Most days, I IM him. Yesterday, he IM'd me pretty late and just said "I have a headache". It's making me upset. I talked to him yesterday and asked him why he wasn't really talking to me and he said that he didn't really have anything to say. I try to engage him in conversation but it feels like pulling teeth. The day before I left, he was pretty much ignoring me all day. I got pissed off because it didn't even feel like he cared that we would be apart. Only then did he make any effort to spend time with me.

I feel so lonely and depressed with my marriage. We pretty much have no sex life, never had much of one unless I was the one who initiated it. The only time he ever initiated was right after we had a talk about it. It's hard to have children when your husband doesn't ever show interest in you sexually. What do you even say to people who ask when you are having children? I feel like saying "well, in order to do that, my husband would actually have to want to have sex with me". I don't say that, I just say, "we're not not trying".

Part of me just wants to leave and stay in the US. I kind of feel like I am wasting my time with him. I want someone who will be attracted to me sexually and show interest in me. If he's not going to give me that, what's the point in being there with him, especially when I could be working on my career and finding someone who can give me what I want and need.

I honestly don't know how to fix this. We have talked about this so many times I can't even count. He "fixes" things that day or the day after, but then it just goes back to the same thing. We tried to get counseling through military one source, but the therapist who was supposed to call us never did and my husband never followed up. I have no idea if we'll be able to get counseling in Italy. We need something or else I don't see this lasting. I'm trying to hold on, but I am so unhappy.

I love my husband and I want this to work out, but I'm just so sick of nothing changing with him.

If anyone has any suggestions on how to fix this, please let me know.


(673) Dinner with new Italian friends

Last Saturday we were invited to dinner by an Italian that was in one of Mike's classes at work (I'll call him Max because I have no idea how to spell his name). I was pretty nervous because I don't know much Italian, but the evening went well.

We headed out about an hour before we had to be there and good thing we did! It took about 30-40 minutes to get to his street, but we had a hard time finding somewhere to park. We ended up parking in a parking garage. We weren't sure how to go about paying until I saw the booth inside. We talked to the guy who didn't speak English (and neither one of us speak much Italian), but he gave us a slip of paper that had our car. We had to give him our keys so he could move cars around. I was a little weary of that because we had kept euros right in the car, but everything turned out okay. We paid about 8 euros for about 3 hours. We got our car back okay and the money was still there.

After we parked, we tried to find his house, but we couldn't. Mike called him, but it was a difficult conversation because of the limited English that Max knows. After a while, Mike figured out what he was saying and we met Max across the street near a gas station (which is not like the US, the gas stations here are basically a couple of pumps on the side/middle of the road). Turns out we could have parked at his apartment. From what I've seen apartments in Naples have a gated parking lot for the residents).

When we got to his house, they gave us a tour. There house was very tidy and small! It was very nice though. We talked with Max and his wife. She doesn't know much English and I don't know much Italian and we laughed together at the awkwardness of it. Max showed us his state quarters map.

When the pizza arrived we sat at the table and ate. Everyone got their own pizza. The personal pizzas here are HUGE! I can barely eat half of it. It is very delicious though. They brought out desert, which was a cake called baba. I tried a bite and it was VERY sweet, too sweet for me. We brought some chocolate chip cookies for them to try as well. I wish I could have made them from scratch, but we still don't have our household goods which contain the baking materials and I didn't want to buy all that stuff again just for one night.

After dinner, we taught each other English/Italian. We left around 10:45PM because we were getting a little tired.

It was a great experience and I am glad we went. I had a lot of fun and it made it all laugh trying to learn each other's language.

(672) Postcard Swap!!

I participated in the Postcard Swap hosted by jessicalynnwrites. I swapped postcards with Ashley who lives in Texas.

Here's the postcard I sent from Italy:

Here's the postcard I received from Texas:

I love getting mail!