Au revoir, mes amis!

Lindsay here.

Before we say our goodbyes, which we have been doing here in Chattanooga with boat rides and baby showers, I wanted to include at least one more post about our time here.

I’m sure you guys read all about our time in Virginia, when we drove and dined across that fine state to see the sights and spend some quality time with Whit’s family.

Chattanooga has been at a different pace, though, one that suits Soddy Daisy, the green grass and blue lakes located just north of the city that my family calls home.

After what seemed like weeks of “go, go, go” of working, packing, and saying goodbyes, we finally arrived here, unpacked our incredibly large U-haul, and breathed a collective ahhhhh as we finally sat down for one last hoorah in the US of A.

We’ve been here over a week, a fun time of enjoying the lake and family. It’s the longest I’ve spent at home since I graduated college and I think my parents are noticing the differences in our lifestyles now.

Whit and I take life at somewhat of a “slower” pace. For example, when my parents paid our entry fees to a local 5-mile race, all we had to do was just be ready to hop in the car Saturday morning at 6:30 a.m. Easy enough, or so we thought.

As organized, early and responsible as my parents are is as unorganized, un-early, and irresponsible as Whit and I are. It’s almost comical, really.

See we didn’t prepare the night before. So 3o minutes before we were supposed to leave, which is actually when we rolled out of bed un-showered (and un-deodorized for Whit we found out later), Whit remembered he needed to load his bike on the car to meet a friend for a bike ride after the race. He loads it. Then unloads it, when he realizes it doesn’t lock and he doesn’t want to lose his last form of transportation on two wheels. Then, as my mom patiently waits in the car, he runs back in the house to find his lost cell phone. Eventually we’re off…. until 15 minutes later when Whit looks down to see, miraculously, he doesn’t have his running shoes. For a running race.

Long story short, Whit ran barefoot, a feat that definitely garnered some raised eyebrows at this small-town event and slowed him down a minute a mile and left him with some incredibly nasty blood blisters.

My sister, Jessica, explained it bluntly to the curious crowds on the sidelines. “It wasn’t by choice, it was by stupidity.”

My parents were not impressed by his feat. My mom naturally rolled her eyes. My dad, the uber-organized one in this family, shook his head and laughed. Then said, “You know what I do, since I’m an engineer, planner, you know, I lay out all my clothes the night before,” like this is a foreign idea that surely Whit and I have missed somehow in all our days on this earth.

Anyway, we’ve had some laughs here this week and definitely some good times. We’ve visited with my pregnant sister Jessica who looks so cute and pregnant (translated: big, though please don’t tell her that, and definitely don’t even try to touch her belly, another lesson learned) and hung out with my other sister Kathryn and her husband and have said our goodbyes to all my local extended family.

It’s been a fun week and it’s going to be hard to say goodbye tomorrow morning. My dad, of course, is knee-deep in advice for our trip, now that he has seen first hand our doleful organizational skills.

“You should probably spend all day Sunday packing,” he says, trying to help, after convincing us to leave about four hours early so we can combat the Atlanta Monday-morning traffic.

“Sunday?” I say. “I was thinking we’d just get up early Monday morning. That seemed to work perfectly for the race.”

Anyway, my last dinner in America is calling: pizza in downtown Chattanooga with my parents and Kathryn and Bill. * See more photos of the week in Chattanooga at: http://picasaweb.google.com/lindsayaltizer.

Next time I type, it will probably be from South Korea or Thailand.

Au revoir!