I have a lot of things to write about, but not a lot of time to actually sit down and write – so it’s now almost midnight, and I will try my best at remembering everything that’s happened whilst not falling asleep and dropping the phone on my face (fingers crossed).
OH! I’m also editing a video from this week, so if you don’t feel like reading this novel I’m about to write then you can keep an eye out for that (if I can get it done before my hair turns gray)
THE DAY MY AUNT ARRIVES!!! I had been counting down the days and annoying my friends about this for weeks – so I was pretty excited, as I hadn’t seen any family since last August (and also because my aunt is one of my favorite people).
Before heading to Orange County, which was where she would be landing, me and my host family drove to Whittier to have dinner, and to see some pledging thing (don’t remember what they called it) for Hal’s fraternity at my host parents’ college – Whittier College. It was actually quite interesting and pretty impressive to watch, they had been practicing what they were for a long time, and you could tell. Cindy also gave me a tour of the campus, which was smaller than I expected!
From there we went to pick up my aunt at the airport – I had Chad record our reunion (gonna be in the video!), but when I saw her it didn’t actually feel like it’d been that long, it’s odd to think that it’d been 6 months. I also noticed how rusty my Norwegian was and how much I struggled to organize my sentences, which my aunt actually commented on hahah! I was stumbling quite a bit, but the funny thing is that one of my friends told me that she could tell I’d been speaking Norwegian again, because my English had gotten worse! My brain was quite confused.
As you can imagine, my aunt was pretty jet lagged from traveling almost 20 hours – so 5 am Friday morning, I was woken up by a lovely medley featuring Eminem, Party Rock Anthem, and a wide variety of different songs that she was DJing until I decided to get out of bed (not really a traditional alarm, but it was still fun hahah).
When school for me was over, I took my aunt to show her the campus and to meet some my teachers. I really enjoyed showing her my new normal, and I think/hope she liked it too!
After showing her my high school we went to the Tyler Mall to attempt to do some shopping – I ended up finding something, but my aunt couldn’t make up her mind on what she was looking for, so that wasn’t really successful. Eventually we went to have dinner at Yard House (one of my favorite restaurants), which I’d been looking forward to, but of course they didn’t have a table, so we ended up wandering around the mall looking for a place to eat – we eventually found this BBQ place (which is kind of ironic for a vegetarian) and had dinner there before we went home.
Now to the exciting part – looking for a place to stay in LAS VEGAS!! We decided that we wanted to do something special with my aunt since she was here + something for my 18th birthday, so Vegas is what we decided on (and I do not regret that choice, obviously)
We were up and ready before the sun, and started the day driving Troy to a baseball job he was trying out for, followed by breakfast at one of my favorite places in Riverside – JuJu Bar!! They serve fresh smoothies, juices, vitamin shots and THE best acai bowls (seriously, the best). I had my regular order – the tsunami bowl, my aunt had the same as me and Cindy had her twilight bowl. They’re always a success, I think I could have it for every meal.
I think it was around 1 pm we could start seeing the city pop up from the desert (and the massive ads were getting more frequent) – and our first stop, obviously, the Las Vegas sign!
We drove down the strip to the older part of the city to kill some time before checking in to our hotel, the Paris. Both me and my aunt were glued to the windows hahah.
After a couple of hours relaxing at our hotel we walked down the strip to have dinner at Hard Rock Cafe – and the strangest thing happened, I found out that several of my exchange friends were in Las Vegas too that weekend!?
We were all quite tired after eating, and that combined with being jet lagged was not a good combo for my aunt, so we went back to our hotel to rest before we were gonna head out again. Both my aunt and Cindy fell asleep, so I was just kinda sitting there waiting to go explore. Turns out laying down was the kiss of death for Cindy, so me and my aunt went out to watch the water show at the Bellagio (literally right across the street). It was amazing!! Exactly what you’d expect being in Vegas.
I was really tired that night, and the proof was in my phone – I actually don’t remember doing this, but when I woke up the next morning and unlocked my phone, I saw that the last thing I’d googled was Justin Trudeau (the Canadian prime minister) and Joe Biden (former vise president)…? I honestly don’t remember why or when, so I was quite confused to say the least (I think it’s hilarious though).
Sunday was the do-as-much-as-possible day, and I think we succeeded.
We also did get some shopping in, and I got to buy some presents for my nephews and grandparents.
We figured we couldn’t go to Vegas without seeing a show – so we ended up choosing Mystere, a Cirque du Soleil show at Treasure Island.
Before the show we had dinner at Guy Fieri’s restaurant.
The first thing we did was go and get my new phone (finally!!!) – I’ve been having trouble since September, so getting a phone that I can basically live in has been amazing.
Before going home, we decided that we were gonna go zoom lining in the old part of Las Vegas(!!). We probably stood in line for almost 2 hours, but oh my gosh was it worth it – it had gotten dark when it was our turn, so all the lights were turned on and the view from the top was amazing.
My 18th birthday!!
When I got to school, 3 of my friends surprised me with donut holes and a poster that they had made with 18 envelopes that they’d filled with memories we have together + photos!! Couldn’t have gotten a better gift, thank you guys!
The restaurant was on a roof I believe, so we had a view over the city.
Last day with my aunt..
The only thing she hadn’t really seen was the beach, so after school me and Cindy took her to my favorite, Laguna Beach, so she could see the sunset over the water. We made it just in time!
Up at 4 am to drive to John Wayne airport in Orange County. Goodbyes are always harder than I think they will be.