We had travelled to London, Paris, Geneva, Leysin, Interlaken, Jungfraujoch, Amsterdam and Rotterdam in November 2014, taking advantage of the big distance that was already to be flown to get to Israel, were for the first time we were going to get Jack’s hair cut. It is a Jewish tradition, that a very few people follow, to let the hair of a boy grow until he turns three years old, and then get it cut for the first time. We are not religious Jews, but we liked the idea of keeping this tradition for multiple reasons: once, we heard that the fruits of a three mustn’t be cut in its first three years in order for the tree to become strong; another theory was that three was the age when the kid becomes rational and stops acting by its impulses; but the one that Beca liked the most, had nothing to do with Judaism. She practices Kundalini yoga, and in there, they believe that the Aura of the baby and the mom’s are bind together from pregnancy until the baby is three years old. So, we just saw many connections as for the number three, and we decided to let Jack’s hair grow. His hair was looooong… and it required a big effort to keep it that way, but also… we always knew that we would get it cut in Israel, and he did too, so we waited for three years, and finally the moment arrived. So this is why we stopped in Europe, just as an excuse to travel there before hitting Israel.
Everyone thought we were nuts for doing this… not only the long hair, but also the big travel… they couldn’t believe that we were going to do such a tremendous travel with a toddler- from Mexico to Israel. But, we did, and to be honest? It was magnificent! Jack behaved excellently during the flight, he enjoyed every train that we rode on, every hop on and hop off bus that he went into- always with his headphones on, as requested by him, and we could not have enjoyed ourselves more! Long distance and extended traveling days, were no longer a concern for us, we were toddler proofed!
We made it to Israel after enjoying ourselves in Europe, and we travelled there too, Haifa, Tel Aviv, the Dead Sea, Jerusalem, Tzfat, and of course, Meron, the place were the Rabbi cut Jack’s hair. The ceremony was really amazing, and the moment he lost the hair, his face changed tremendously! He was no longer a baby, he became a big kid, we could see that immediately!
When we arrived back to Mexico, we decided to take on a big project! Beca applied for a scholarship in The Netherlands, and the moment she did, we knew she was going to get it granted. It is hard to explain, but we really did picture ourselves living there, even before getting the scholarship. It is very weird, but when being in The Netherlands, that did not even cross our minds!
We did not know anything about the scholarship for months, so we kept living our daily routines, and since we had no news of that yet, we thought the project was over- though deep inside we still had hope. Thus, in February, we took on another trip to celebrate Jaime’s 30th birthday! We went to Beijing, Shanghai, Xian, Guilin, Hong Kong, San Francisco, Carmel and Los Angeles. Three weeks of crazy traveling! The first day after arriving in Beijing, we needed to commence with the visits early in the morning, we were so tired, but Jack woke up and he was just in a happy mood! We could not believe what a magnificent travel companion he was, and the capability of adaptation that he held! He was even better at this than us!!! Plus he could communicate in Chinese when there, and he was our translator for saying we did not eat pork. We enjoyed a very unique experience, since its was the Chinese New Year when we went there, and festivities were everywhere. We all climbed to the top of the Great Wall, saw the Terracota Warriors- were we even got some snow- had dinner in the Jinmao Tower of Shanghai, cruised in Guilin and went to Hong Kong Disneyland, just to mention a few of the experiences we lived in there.
We became in love with San Francisco-once again, and had a delicious dinner in Kokkari Estiatorio and a breakfast worth waiting in line for in Mama’s! We even went to a private island to celebrate once more Jaime’s 30th birthday, in Forbes Island. When in Carmel, we felt like Scout explorers in need of using a flashlight in order to be able to walk at night during the little streets. Finally, Los Angeles was the perfect closing point! Amazing weather with delicious food! Of course we did not miss the brunch in Fig and Olive nor dinner at Spago! But still… no news about the outcome of Beca’s scholarship, and it was already March.
Time kept on passing and we decided to plan a trip to Miami for July, we booked it and everything was paid for. When in May, Jaime was sleeping and Beca yelled from the inside of the walk-in closet: “Jaaaaaaaaaime!!! I got the scholarship!!!” In that moment, both of us wanted to cry! but not because of joy precisely! The news had messed up with the feature plans in a terrible way! We did not expect her to get that anymore! So, we had moved on from that idea! We thought it was simply gone…
The best lesson that we learned is that it is really impossible to plan things, because things never turn out as expected, and as Beca describes it she says that she just wished with all of her heart to get that scholarship, and after having that feeling all over her, she just let it go… and boom! The wish came true! Beca had gotten a full academic scholarship for Maastricht University, were she got into a Master’s in Laws of Intellectual Property.
After giving it much thought, we decided that life does not hand out opportunities like those once every time, and that we were in no position to escape the big opportunity. We decided to go on with the project, she accepted the scholarship!
We had just vert few months to plan it, so we had to act in fast forward! We were like moving machines fixing things at an incredible speed! We enrolled Jack in the UWC, the international school of Maastricht; we rented an apartment which we fell in love with-via the internet ha ha; we packed every single item of our house into moving boxes; and we put all of our memories and Mexican life in the storage room, it was time for us to move on- literally!
We applied for visas and that took a long time! the day of travel was all depending on the day of granting of the visas! So, as we could not do anything else, and the trip to Miami was already paid for, we decided to take on that trip! We enjoyed the lovely Hallandale beach, Jack went to camp at the JCC, and we took on as much sunshine as we could before the big move. We stocked ourselves with US shopping things ranging from beauty products and special foods, to clothing and pharmacy products, and we shipped it all in moving boxes from Miami to Rotterdam, where Ewa- Beca’s friend which she met while studying in Japan, and had been in contact ever since- received them and kept them for us until we arrived in The Netherlands.
Of course we did not miss the magnificent breakfast at the News Cafe; hit the Aventura Mall; visited The Jungle Island to see and pet some animals- such as Kangaroos; did some biking in South Beach; had dinner in Katsuya, and when we had realized it, Jack had eaten all of the hot stone beef in Makoto! ha ha…
We even hit The Warped Tour to watch some punk music bands perform live and transformed ourselves into rebellious teenagers while in there!
The time in Miami was over… and our days in Mexico had started the countdown! Beca’s visa got approved first, so we decided that she was going to arrive in Maastricht before the rest. We booked her flight ticket, and we packed her things. When doing this, we realized that we still had many things left to take with us to Maastricht, and when doing the math we decided that it was better for us to ship again some boxes from the excellent US Post to the Netherlands. Otherwise, with the Mexican courier they would have never arrived.
She took on to Houston to do the shipping, and of course she did not miss the chance to enjoy as well! It was her last trip to the States before moving to Europe! So Beca enjoyed herself as much as she could. She had dinner at Pappas Bros. Steakhouse, which she described as one of the best steakhouses that she had ever been to; she got her eyebrows threaded for the first time in her life- not the traditional eyebrow plucking but with a thread, what an experience!; she pampered herself with a mani-pedi at Picasso Nails, were she got herself a full hands and feet exfoliation with a scrub which got rubbed with an orange by vietnamese women- while drinking delicious bubble tapioca milk tea; and even got a free dessert in Uchi, a Japanese restaurant, just because the waiter/bar tender found her and her family so courageous on the move decision that she praised her with that as a compliment for her admiration.
But, mostly I think Beca needed this trip in order to relief all of the stress that she had been through with the move, and the one that was yet to come! So it was a good excuse for her to rest and take a break from being a wife and a mom for two nights… she was so relaxed, that she even forgot the whole suitcase at the shipping store and had to change the flight for a later time in order to get it back from the shop!
Beca arrived to Mexico, happy and renewed, ready to leave for The Netherlands. We packed her last minute things and Jaime and Beca’s mom-Linda, took her to the Airport. She checked in with all of her seven suitcases… and passed through security, she was going to meet Jaime and Jack as soon a they got their visas. Linda and Jaime left the Airport, and Beca… missed the plane!
So, Linda and Jaime came back and picked Beca up from the Airport. We went home together, and the next day we received a confirmation for Jack’s and Jaime’s visas. We could all go together as a family. Beca lost her ticket, and we purchased new ones, altogether- including Trufa, our lovely Boston Terrier female dog, which is 5 years old now- in Lufthansa, as Trufa could only fly by this Airline because of her being a “short-nosed” breed.
We immediately understood that things had happened for a reason, and we were glad that we could depart altogether as a family. So on July 29th, we departed from Mexico City to Frankfurt, with all of our suitcases and our lovely dog. We were open for the best, embracing opportunities as they had come to us, welcoming change, but more than that… grateful for being together as a family in this new and exciting challenge that was expecting us all… life in Maastricht, The Netherlands.