I arrived bearing gifts, such as headbands and t-shirts and alpaca wool socks and random jewelry and lots of ticket stubs that I probably should have thrown away a long time before. I met our family's exchange student, Theresa from Germany, and spent lots of time with my family.
It was a little weird being called by my proper name, instead of Dorothy, or Betty, or Kansas, or any of the other nicknames I picked up during my travels.
I looked at real jobs for a bit, but the idea scared me a little. Found my dream job, and it involved driving around a golf course all day in a cart full of beer. The tips were unbelievable.
For a while, I waffled on whether or not to go back to Europe. Was the cost worth it? Was I just trying to keep from growing up? Would my friends here remember who I was when I returned?
But I can't keep traveling forever, and I might as well do as much of it as possible while I'm young. So I bought my tickets back to Europe, and gave my boss one week's notice. I said goodbye to Kansas, which I genuinely believe is the greatest place in the world, and prepared to return to Europe.