Re-entry

The flight attendant’s voice came over the loud speaker, announcing our descent into Los Angeles. I took out my earphones, put away my laptop and opened my window shade. With LAX in the distance and the downtown skyline to my right, I peered over the great Los Angeles basin.

Window

Quickly my attention turned to the white haze blanketing the city. The fog, smog, haze or clouds (call it whatever you like) became thicker with each passing mile, and the closer we came to landing, the worse it thickened.

I’m certain I’m not the only person disturbed by the air quality seen from 20,000 feet above, but coming face to face with this environmental reality is never easy.

In fact, this mass of pollution is something I see every time I return to California. But after spending a week in a country known for its lush countrysides, green pastures, and blue skies, the “white balance” hanging over LA was more apparent than ever.

The reaction I received the last time I re-entered the United States (Read about it: HERE) made me think twice about how I perceive my home country when returning from being abroad. With this in mind, I did my best to tuck away negativity, even if it was starring at me in the face!

So after the taxi dropped me outside my home, I walked up my pathway and began the process of decompressing and re-entering my life at home.

I immediately found myself relieved to have familiar food to eat, so over a dinner of veggie enchiladas, I took out my laptop and began to sifting through photographs.

Feeling bittersweet about returning so soon (and not wanting to forget my favorite images), I relived special moments and tried to remain close to the sounds, smells and feelings of the Emerald Isle. Remembering the air being fresh and clean, the sky blue as can be, the green grass blowing in the breeze.

Fern

I recounted not only my Irish countryside adventure, but also the many other international experiences stamped in my passport. Thumbing through my little blue book, I felt proud of myself, as it became clear to me that traveling the globe is what I value most in life.

To know I’ve seen cities around the world and experienced countless cultures is more important to me than having money or material possessions. This is a particular sense of accomplishment I feel – a feeling as though I’ve checked off something from my life “TO DO” list. And with each country visited, another mark in my book of life.

People value what they do in all different shapes and forms, and this is how I value mine.

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33 thoughts on “Re-entry

  1. Welcome back Ry. I take comfort in the fact that the world is always waiting and open to be explored. I too would rather see the world than sink my roots into one place forever and ever. There is too much beauty in the world to just sit here at home. Erik and i can’t wait to here about your trip and to see your pics.

    love,
    J

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  2. RYAN, WHAT CAN I SAY EXCEPT YOUR MOM AND DAD HAVE TO BE SO PROUD OF YOU . YOU KNOW WHAT’S REALLY IMPORTANT IN LIFE . THE RICHES ARE WHAT’S INSIDE OF YOU. ISEE GOLD.

    THE PICTURES ARE SO NICE. POST SOME MORE PLEASE. WE ALL ENJOY LOOKING AT THEM.
    TG

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  3. Ryan, I think I know how you feel sometimes; there is something magical about visiting different countries. I don’t think I would ever trade the good old USA, but sometimes this attitude of ‘nothing in the world is better than the US’ gets to me at times. I think the charm of the world is its diversity of culture and people and for the most part I love it all.
    There were two specific times in my life, once when I traveled to Australia and another time to Greece, that I wanted to pack up bag and baggage and return to the country I had been in and live there for awhile. I guess if I have any regrets it is that I did not follow my heart and do it. No telling how long I would have stayed, well, except for Australia. They are smart enough not to open end visitors and only allow you six months unless you can bring something to the table that they need.
    I hope I travel again, it’s been several years since my last trip abroad and that was to France. I had a delightful time barging at a snail’s pace for a full week. I would love to go to Spain. Let me know if you need anyone to carry your bags. Glad to have you back home safe and sound.

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  4. I so enjoy your writing and reading your thoughts. I can see you someday, tucked away in a cottage, away from people, in solitude writing from the core of you. You are special and you have special talents. Write that book Ryan!!!

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      1. I don’t know any but I am sure Rosie O’Donnell could connect you with one. Oh Ross….do your magic.

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  5. Ryan: I can’t stand the LA basin air pollution! We drove through the inland empire today on our way back from Palm Springs, and the brown haze/fog/smog through the Pasadena area was as bad as I’ve ever seen it.

    Here’s to a cleaner future where the latest generation of ultra low emission vehicles starts to make a difference!

    Obham: Nice to see your real name! Hello, Gloria!

    Now, TG: What’s yours?

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  6. Glad to see and hear you arrived safe and sound back home, Ryan. Less glad you were greeted with the consequences of environmental neglect!

    Ireland by way of your experience seems divine (it seemed like you were only there for a minute!), and thank you again for sharing it 🙂

    Returning home from a trip is always a challenge, isn’t it? Post-holiday blues are never what you want, particularly if the trip was exceptional.

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  7. So fun. I feel like I was there with you. And RE: traveling the globe as something of value = I couldn’t agree more.
    love you miss you!
    xo
    jen

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  8. RYAN, THE NEXT TIME I SPEAK TO MY SON IN LAW I’LL ASK HIM WHO HE USES. HE WROTE A COUPLE OF BOOKS. BUT THEN HE KNOWS SO MANY PEOPLE. IT’S SO MUCH EASIER IF YOU CAN GET YOUR FOOT IN THE DOOR.

    I WOULD SAY WRITE THE BOOK FIRST, THEN TAKE IT FROM THERE.

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  9. World travel has taught me so much about myself and the USA. So far to go for just a few days though. I need at least a couple of weeks.

    Broke down and got my hair cut too Ryan just too easy no product or comb get out of bed and go! 🙂

    Thanks for sharing with us xoxo:)J

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  10. I hate that feeling when vacation is over and coming home. I get depressed thinking life would be better where I am coming from, of course I am on vacation I probably wouldn’t like it as much if I had to go to work every day there.
    Thanks for sharing! I have never been out of the country except to Canada, so I enjoy living through you.

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  11. Well, wait just a darn minute….TAMPAGRANNY just you go ahead a make a big old batch of Ryan……….I want one also.

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  12. Well, wait just a darn minute….TAMPAGRANNY just you go ahead a make a big old batch of Ryan……….I want one also.

    Good enough to post twice.

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  13. Your blog and writings inspire me! I want to travel the world too, I just can’t afford to right now lol

    I love that when I read your stories, I’m instantly in that place and moment with you! Thanks for that!

    Can you tell I’m not a seasoned flyer? I had no clue about window shades! lol

    I’ve only flown once(LOVED IT) and it was the summer of ’07 from VA to NYC when Ross arranged for me to meet Rosie! I can’t wait to fly again. I want a passport too dammit lmao

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  14. TG: I feel like I am in Buddhist training, learning each day the virtues of patience. Oh….Little Grasshopper…………..a new story? Will it come soon?

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  15. I KNOW ANNIE WHAT YOUR SAYING. I DO KNOW RYAN IS ONE BUSY MAN SO PATIENCE I HAVE LOTS. I KNOW WHEN HE DOES WRITE SOMETHING SOON, WE WILL BE HAPPY CAMPERS. AGREE? ROSS AND RYAN ARE LIKE A SHOT OF MEDICINE TO ME. I ALWAYS FEEL HAPPY AFTER READING ONE OF RYANS STORIES OR HEARING ROSS ON THE INSIDE DISH. CATCH YOU ON HELLO ROSS BLOG.

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  16. I am ready too, waiting along with all of the other Written Road fans. Hope you enjoyed the R Family Vacations and had a special time. Now get on it handsome your fans want a new story xoxo:)J

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