... which means, "See you later, United States!" in Dutch.
So tonight is my last night in the United States. I'm posting this now, because I probably won't have much of an internet connection at the airport tomorrow.
As some of you know, I'm moving to the Netherlands - Amsterdam, to be specific. I married a Dutch guy, and although he would have moved to the US to be with me, I decided that it was time for a change (a really, really big change), and now I'm moving to his city.
We bought a place in the center of Amsterdam. To get an idea of what I mean by "the center", here's a map of Amsterdam, focusing on the Center (click to enlarge):
(Click here to see more via MapQuest.)
We'll be living on a canal; I won't tell you which one, but it's absolutely tourist-picture-book gorgeous. Our place is on the top two floors of a building built in 1889, which is young for Amsterdam; there are other buildings in the neighborhood dating from the 16th century.
More below the fold...
ere's a photo we took last February, while walking through the neighborhood, before we bought the place (click to enlarge):
And here's the view from our front room (click to enlarge):
It's quite a change from New Mexico. My place of residence for the last 3 years (and where I was born) has been Albuquerque. Not a whole lot of water here, that's for sure.
So, tomorrow, we're going to put our three cats in Delta kitty cargo (yes, it's humane, yes, they'll be fine, and yes, I have a damned good vet who says it's ok, so don't call Kitty Protection Services on me). We're flying first class, because we have so many SkyMiles that we could afford it. We've been flying back and forth between the US and Amsterdam for a whole year. I've spent about every other month there, and my husband every month in between over here.
Now, you're probably thinking "It's a GBCW (Goodbye Cruel World) diary!"
You should be so lucky! No, I'm here to stay. You see, even in Old Europe, there's this thing called "the internet". That means I can still post on dailyKos, and that I can support candidates via the internet, whether by blogging, donations, or both. I'll probably get involved with Democrats Abroad. And I'm not giving up my citizenship, because I want to vote, and I want to move back to the US someday. We'll retire in Northern New Mexico, or something like that. Someplace quiet.
Finally, look around you. Go outside (well, it's probably dark right now, but go outside anyway). Look at some photos you've taken on a fun trip in the US. Think about the good things about the country. Do not think about the government. Just think about the mountains, or the cool deli down the street, or driving across the country, just checking out each state and all the unique things about each one.
Because, remember, it isn't the country you hate. It's Bush, it's the government, it's the assholes like DeLay and Frist and Cheney and Rove who suck. Not the country itself.
Love your country. Don't trust the government for a minute, but love the good old USA if you can.
I sure as hell do, and I'll miss it like crazy, even though I love my new country.