One of the most rewarding aspects of being an adult is being able to eat french fries for lunch. I did that today. And I am not ashamed. To boot, I ate them with a coffee mug of ketchup.
When I was a child I dreamed of doing grown-up things like staying up past 9 p.m., having more than one soda per day and riding my bike without a helmet. Of course, now as an adult I have to eat the whole complement of grown-up responsibilities like paying taxes, paying loans, paying for clothes (thanks for all the good years, mom).
I do get to stay up past 9 p.m. now, though most nights I wish I didn’t. I could buy enough soda to take a bath in if I wanted to but, ironically, I have steered away from soda for hippie health reasons. And now I always wear a helmet when I’m on my bike; even when I had long, flowing locks that looked incredible on normal days and utterly stunning when up wind.
Is this a classic you-always-want-what-you-can’t-have moment? No. I love being an adult. Let me walk you through this. My childhood was good. My adolescence was scary but emerging from the darkness I was rewarded with more liberties. My college years were great–all that learning and stuff was, like, the bomb. My post-college/pre-grad school years living in San Francisco with my closest friends was even better because I got to do more stuff without having to learn any more. After doing lots of stuff I caught full-blown adulthood. I had a job but I saw its ceiling. I saw my present and started to be concerned about my future. I understood that my time during that period was a chapter, not a novelette. Graduate school was life changing. I met the future Mrs. Dustin Brumley* and set a definitive course for the rest of my life**. Since then I moved and married and moved and carpe diem-ed my way to the present.
What, you ask, is the reason for my smelling my own farts across 200 words of text? To convey that every subsequent period of my life has been better than the previous. And as it happens, a new period is about to commence. We are trading one Dutch-speaking nation for another Dutch-speaking nation where they speak French. We are going from Grolsch to Jupiler, Heineken to Chimay; from pannekoeken to gaufre.
Our time in the Netherlands has not been cut short, rather it has led us to Europe’s epicenter: Brussels. We move in a few months during which we will be Dutch bucket-listing and saying “tot ziens” to a few many friends.
I look forward to this move–more experiences, more exposure, more culture, more language, more chapters. Plus, the European Union’s paying for it. See you in Brussels!***
*Don’t tell her I called her that.
**As if I know what I will be doing for the rest of my life.
***I will be very disappointed in myself if I don’t post before we’re there.