Friday, December 30, 2011

Post Christmas Cookies

Baking heaven.

Don't tell my Mum but I just made cookies from shop-bought cookie dough and THEY ARE DELICIOUS.
They're supposed to be Christmas cookies but these ones are post Christmas cookies and I put on 10 kg just looking at them.

Why have I never made these before?!  I feel like the Swiss have been hiding this secret from me. From packet to mouth in 6 minutes.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

5 wunderschöne Dinge

I just opened my computer for the first time since I left home.  What's it been....a week?  10 days?  I had to truly think about what day it actually that either means I'm on holidays or severely jetlagged.
Let's go with Option A, Holidays.

Ah, holidays.  The last 10 days or so have felt all too familiar, which is nice.  Kind of like I was only here last month...(contrary to popular opinion, I was not).

Coming back to Zurich last night on the train I was overwhelmed again by the amazing scenery - the Alps just never get old and IT IS SO BEAUTIFUL. 

Loved spending Christmas up in the mountains.  It's a completely different world up there...besides all the extra snow.  Top 5 Highlights of 5 days in the Mountains (Davos):

1.) Success in Cooking a Turkey.
Would you believe, that I, having never (I don't think) eaten a turkey before(!!) cooked a turkey?!  And, not only a turkey, but, if I may say so myself, amazing stuffing AND gravy.  I'm still in shock.  I did feel a little like I was sitting down to a Thanksgiving Dinner on Christmas Day....(I blame this on Hollywood) and I was too squeamish to actually put the stuffing IN the turkey myself, however, I CAN COOK A TURKEY!
Done like a (Turkey) Dinner...and what is Duplo doing on the Table?!

2.) Skiing.
I know, I know.  Last time I went skiing I swore to never repeat the act.  This time, I did the same thing.  Next week, I'll probably say it again.  However, once I survive the treacherous act that is a ski lift, I love being so high up in the mountains with such a clear view of the sky.
(PS. Thanks to Nat for her expert tutelage and patience)

3.) A REAL Christmas Tree with REAL candles.
On Christmas Eve (when Christmas is actually celebrated in Switzerland) we went to the little church in Nick & Nat's village where the school kids were performing a few songs and a play.  I made up the dialogue in my head as it was actually in Swiss German, and it was a pretty interesting play (if I do say so myself).  However, the cool thing was the Christmas tree.  It reached the roof of the 2 story church and the teenage boys sit up on the second story and light the candles.  Nat told me it's always the same - some sort of rite of passage for this age group - you are allowed to be a part of the tree lighting. 
Looked a little to me like the Swiss allow pyromanic tendancies to develop in teenage boys, however I was more worried about a lit Christmas tree in a church made almost completely of wood.  And I was up on the second story with no easy escape.
So between making up the dialogue for a Swiss German Christmas play and planning my escape route, you can imagine I was pretty busy.

Nick & Nat's REAL Christmas tree with REAL candles

4.) HC Davos (Switzerland) v. Vitkovice Steel (Czech Republic).
This ice hockey game would have to be one of the coolest things I've ever seen. I felt very lucky to be invited to go with my Swiss family to a Spengler Cup match (HC Davos v. Vitkovice Steel)...the atmosphere was crazy and professional ice hockey is soooo fast!  I now understand why they think cricket is a slow game!
I also learnt some German chants useful for ice hockey games.  You never know when these will come in handy.

5.)  --
Ok, so I don't have a fifth highlight.  The title was just catchy.
But, in general, I'm just quite happy to be here.  It feels a little like home.  Getting used to understanding nothing again, losing whatever English I did have, Slipping and sliding on ice, Eating good chocolate and drinking gluwein, Sparkling Apple Juice!, Dry lips and catching up with many good friends.
I'm heading to Kassel on January 1st, for an intensive 3-week German course (language + culture) and then am planning on heading back to Zurich for a few weeks before I start my semester in Munich. 

Auf Wiedersehen! und Ich wunsche dir ein frohes neues Jahr!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

I still run for trains

It didn't take long for old habits to return.  First train I went for...I was running late (not my fault) and I although I ran, I missed it.  
Swiss trains 1.  Kylie 0.
Later that day I found myself running down the road for the train...and had to laugh.  It felt like Déjà vu.  Bag, scarf, coat flying behind me, running past the ticket machine, throwing some money in it's direction, only for my efforts to be in vain as the train pulled away just as I got to the platform.  
Swiss trains 2.  Kylie 0.

Have been fighting jet lag for the past 4 days, but starting to feel more human again today.  Once again, I am typing away on a strange European keyboard which I blame for this short post.  However, Mum (and others who were wondering) I am and sound.  Zürich was amazingly white and snowy and beautiful when I arrived, and now up in the mountains near Davos, there is plenty of snow and ensuring there will be a white Christmas.

And now I am cooking croissants, enjoying Swiss bread, and about to make a pavlova (just to keep Christmas a little bit Australian).  I think I've also said I will cook a turkey for Christmas dinner (what was I thinking...never cooked a turkey in my life).

It's so lovely to be seeing friends again and those Swiss Francs again.  (First day I arrived, there was a 1000 CHF ($1000) note on the bench...ah, yes.  Indeed I am in Switzerland).

Frohe Weihnachten!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

I am the official Door Opener

I was reminded of good things tonight.
Every now and then I join an excellent group of people who join together to take uni students who live on campus to Woolies. It's a bit of a hike for the students otherwise, especially with lots of shopping and so they're only too happy to jump onboard our bus of fun for a 5 minute drive to buy groceries as we go back and forth.
I act as the official door opener and professional conversationalist. I never knew I had it in me - to begin so many conversations - but I just keep talking until some unsuspecting person is tricked into chatting with me for the ride.

Tonight, a guy got on who I've seen around uni. To be honest, not the person I would generally talk to. If I had to stereotype myself and him.
But tonight, he was lucky enough (unfortunate enough?) to sit next to me. I talked about uni and holidays and Woolies and he grunted a couple of times and I thought, this is going to be an extra long 5 minutes. But I kept talking to myself and then he started talking. And had really good things to say. And then he initiated the conversation on the way home. He initiated conversation and questions about human rights and women's rights...and the oversecularisation of our culture....and community work. And was seeking real depth and answers to big questions.

Not that I have those answers, but I was thankful for the reminder that people are people. It doesn't matter what they look like, or who I think they are from their appearance.
And that we seek truth and goodness. And that my worldview is small, and God's worldview is big. Much, much larger than what I think or believe.

"We can name Jesus, orient out lives around him, and celebrate him as the way, the truth and the life, and at the same time respect the vast, expansive, generous mystery that he is."

Monday, October 3, 2011

4 Monate

I'm a little bit ashamed that it's been over 4 months since I last blogged.
I didn't blog at all about the last trip OS (5 weeks away - NZ, Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia, Bintan Island (Indonesia))...definately an adventure (and great times with wonderful friends and Jenna (both a sister AND a friend).
I'm more than half way through another semester at uni! Eeek. Well...that may perhaps be wishful thinking - still a hard slog ahead to finish.
Just home from a lovely holiday back to Dubbo, finishing with Tom & Katie's wedding last night in Wee Waa. It was such a wonderful and fun celebration and it's hard to believe my little brother is married! And we have a new sister!
I bought a flight to Zurich.
I've been accepted to study in Munich for a semester.
I spent the last week being apart of a study intensive at Burrabadine, which was an excellent chance to see Jesus through new eyes and refocus on Him.
I put fuel in a car for the first time in almost 3 years! (The price has definately gone up!!)
I have wonderful German friends at uni who pretend they understand me when I massacre their language.
I have hopeful plans for time in Switzerland next year.
I rode a hired scooter in Thailand! BIG fear relieved and I want to explore South America on a scooter now. Who is coming?
I will be in Europe for the 4th winter in a row. How does this happen?!
And that, my friends, is an update on the last 4 months of my life.

'Jesus never asked anyone what they did for a living; what mattered was what they did with their life'

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Why is my white dog now grey?

This is kind of like a 'Dear Abby' column but instead I'm calling it: 'Dear Tessie'.

Dear Tessie.
I took my white maltese shih-tzu to the dog grooming place shop thing because she was, ah, in need of grooming. She had been neglected since we have a new child in the family and we could no longer pay attention to her 23 hours a day.
I went to pick her up when she was finished and instead of a white dog there was a grey dog wagging her tail at me. I've had her genetically tested and she's the same dog. Why is she now grey?
From Worried and Confused Dog Owner 135445

Dear Worried and Confused Dog Owner 135445.
This is not a common problem. Dog grooming place shop things, as you call them, do not normally cause your pet (now politically called animal companion) to change colour. I've taken time this week to spend some time talking to your animal companion and she's given me a full update on the happenings on that day. Did you know she could talk? We rarely come across as intelligent animal companions as this. Although I must warn you - she told me she is her losing her ability to speak because of the neglect received by her in recent months.

Apparently after she had been groomed by Groomer #1 she was placed in a cage to await your arrival. She was somewhat embarrassed to talk about this part of the experience as the groomer has made her feel quite ashamed by her new haircut. Her ears are bare and as these aren't her best feature she would like in future for a slighter longer cut in the area.
Whilst in the cage, a second animal companion was placed in a cage and the Groomer #1 left the room and closed the door. The other animal companion was apparently quite troublesome and a bad influence on your dog. Apparently, he talked her into using teamwork to move their cages across the floor to reach some tasty treats. She was unsure of the following details but in their haste to feast on the treats, they knocked over a large bucket which fell on a device she described to me and I've understood to be a hyrobath. This caused a fire to break out and as I mentioned, she is unsure of the following details. It wasn't until Dog Groomer #3 (Dog Groomer #2 was on a lunch break) smelt smoke that the door was opened and the dogs saved. She is also aware that she could be charged for the ensuing destruction of the hydrobath and wishes for this information to remain confidential. The fire caused both dogs to suffer severe smoke inhalation and the ash caused your dog's coat to turn from white to grey.

I've spoken with the Dog Grooming shop (CLEAN-DOGS-R-US) and they've offered to pay for a full day-spa-visit with your local vet where your animal companion will be observed for a full day to check for concerning signs of smoke inhalation (sever coughing, asthma etc), and also assured us that Dog Groomer #1 has been replaced. You may also be interested to know that dogs with upper jaw which jut out higher than the lower jaw are three times as likely to be led astray by fast-talking troublesome animal companions. This statistic will certainly help her should the case be taken any further by CLEAN-DOGS-R-US.

I wish you all the best with your future endeavours and your talking now-grey animal companion. She should return to full colour in 4-6 years.


If your animal companion is grey after a visit from a Dog-Grooming salon, they may have also suffered smoke inhalation.

This is the only time that this blog will switch to a Dear Abby-style post. If you didn't understand what this post was about, it probably wasn't meant for you.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

The Line that I was born above

Live Below The Line - An Interesting Little Journey - Part 2

Day 3 is over and I have survived 3 days of living on $2 a day. Well, foodwise anyway.

In the last 3 days, I think I've been more aware of all the things I use/do that cost a lot. Well, a lot in comparison to $2 for all food all day. Everything from fuel to my facewash to the coffee that I can't have this week from the uni cafes. My coffees at uni cost $4.30 - and that's not even a large cup! That's twice what I'm living on for food! Twice what 1.4 billion people in the world survive on for their every need every day. And not just as an experiment for a week- that's their life!

It's hard to get my head's not just about the lack of choice for food or the lack of the tastes that I really enjoy. It's also appreciating and understanding that it's hard to concentrate when you're hungry. It's much harder to function at basic life tasks when you're thinking about your next meal and it just affects a large part of life. So if that is your life, then life if harder and affects more than just meal times.

It's good to be reminded of a much bigger picture and a much bigger world. That I was born above a line that 1.4 billion people today were born under. Even if I'm not *enjoying* this experience, I'm grateful for the reminder. Also grateful for .39c jelly I got stuck into tonight.

Monday, May 16, 2011

An interesting little journey

Over 1.4 billion people in the world live below the poverty line in the world.

1.4 billion. I can't even get my head around such a number.

So this week I've signed up to Live Below The Line - spending $2 a day on food from today (Monday) til Friday - I went shopping yesterday and bought as much rice and lentils and veggies as my allowance would buy me.

Made it through Day 1. Very much missed a coffee this morning and I've been trying to think about things that are the opposite of sugar.

So what's the point? Why miss the sugar and the caffeine and have to face lentils again tomorrow? I think it's got something to do with me gaining a better understanding of how much I have and how much others don't. Of being thankful...

Here's a pic of the food supplies for the week. I had a couple extra dollars to spend because one night I'm sharing dinner with some friends. (A 66cent per person dinner part-ay!)

Saturday, May 7, 2011

I've been...

"How do you encapsulate a trip of a lifetime without lapsing into ecstatic cliches on the beauty of the landscapes or the splendour of their cultures? I don't want to retread that well-worn trail of self-discovery and growing up and heart-warming messages of the week, that's boring and we all know it. You meet a couple of soul mates. You meet a billion traveller douchebags. And all the while, goats are pissing in the aisle of your bus, small sturdy indigenour women are kicking the back of your seat and you're contemplating peeing in a Pringles can as you rattle through some desolately beautiful mountainous landscapes and you admit that you wouldn't want to be doing anything else."
-Neda Vanovac

I've been reading a few interesting thoughts and opinions from Rob Bell in "Love Wins: Heaven, Hell, and the fate of every person who ever lived" (Who doesn't love a super fast international shipping when Australia is the last place on the planet to have books released?). But my copy is currently being read by someone else so I'll share some quotes later...maybe.

I've been thinking a lot about Negligence. And Law. And Immigration. And Karl Marx. And Fair Trade Coffee. And Free Trade Zones in Sri Lanka. And I should be thinking about Economics and whether or not the fiscal stimulus averted Australia's recession. Instead, I'm thinking that I've only got 6 weeks left of the semester and then it's time for more holidays.

I should be planning those holidays. Flights booked. Check. Every other details. No check.
Ah well. I borrowed a book out of the library today about Thailand. At least I'm passively proactive.

I've been working on Soul Surfer, a movie coming out in cinemas this month...26th May...the story of surfer Bethany Hamilton...starring AnnaSophia Robb, Dennis Quaid, Helen, reviews, advertisements...can you tell it's all I've been thinking about at work?

I've been watching Glee:Season 2. TV series should be banned during semesters.

I've been holidaying down with my family in Dubbo/Bourke and also catching up with lovely friends in Melbourne. And yes, in case you were wondering, Melbourne is all about the coffee.

Now, where's that Economics paper...

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Switzerland: home swiss home

Just in case you wondered if I did anything else in Switzerland besides getting on a train.

Actually, many trains.
I felt quite spoilt on this visit because I got to do pretty much everything that I loved doing.

Eat fondue. Twice.
Bake Swiss bread.
Limousine ride around the lake of Zurich.
Ski (x 2 days) - 2nd run.not a good idea. (PS. I DON'T love skiing - this was a trick)
Wednesday Train Station Markets (Probieren?).
Chocolate muesli.
Drive like absolute craziness to catch a train. Why run when you can drive? [not in the limo :)]
Lindt shop!!
Feather duvets.
Aelpler Macaroni
Dr Manu party
India replay: the dosa
India replay: the breakfast
Splendid walks.
Freitag shop.

(I feel like a lot of this list has to do with food :S)

But the best bits was getting to catch up with so many good people - such a treat! It was truly amazing. I got to stay with Nick&Nat, Manu&Lia and the Swiss fam which was so lovely, and made it rather hard to leave to come home.

the Swiss girlies

...Summer is coming...

"A decent celebration"

On a side note, me and Notre Dame were reunited on my way out of Europa. Speaking of food, I ate crepes and chocolate croissants while in Paris.

Switzerland: [pretty much] the whole point of my passport

17 February 2011.

Getting on that train again was like coming home.
The train speaking to me in 3 languages - and I could quote along verbatim - yes, I can tell you where the restaurant carriage is in French.
Smiling and nodding whilst in the French part of Switzerland. It all came back to me: Keep your mouth shut and no one knows you're a foreigner. I just answer with a oui, non, and wish everyone a bonsoir.
And tell them where the restaurant carriage is.
Easy, non?

Seeing Freitag bags everywhere makes me happy. The poor people in Australia carrying these Swiss-branded bags that I've attacked in the past, desperate for some Swiss contact. Now I am just happy to sit and be surrounded by Swissness.

The bank machine machine that dispersed my transaction in 200chf notes. ($200).
Sigh. Only in Switzerland.

How happy I am to use my Swiss train pass again (Gleis7). I pretend I am Swiss and am SO thankful to have returned to Swiss land during it's validity (Never thought when I bought it last year that I'd be back within the year!).

The train leaving to the exact second. Raclette pretzels.
Everyone in black. And gray.
I am quite happy to pretend to be home.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Malaysia. A story mostly about food.

I didn't know before I went to Malaysia, that the entire country is crazy about food. Really and truly. I thought I ate a lot in India, however, I was wrong.

From giant jackfruit...

To giant strawberries...
To my liebling food, DOSAI...To blue rice (actually REALLY yum!)

To I have no idea what this was called, but doesn't Jas look happy? Too much happy?
Because Malaysia is quite in the "middle" of a whole bunch of other countries, there's a huge influence of lots of other culture's foods which is quite fun.
I feel like we spent the whole week eating. Is this possible? Cheers to jackfruit and dosai and waffles and bubble tea and murtabaks and blue rice and coffee and tea in the same drink!!

5 Reasons to GO[a] to India

(What happened after the Camp) (Mostly in Goa)

We arrived back from the camp in dire need of a shower or five and grateful for the warmer weather. While it was a massive effort to trek out of Avalanche, I would go 10x as far because it was simply so beautiful.

#1 - If you go to India, you can wear a saree. I would like to take this moment to tell you it's not as comfortable as it looks. It doesn't look comfortable, you say? That's cos IT'S NOT!
Much respect to the women who wear this every day, with all the day-to-day tasks. I guess you get used to it....but much respect anyway.
However, it was rather fun to wear it for a day (for the wedding).

#2 - If you go to India, you can meet an elephant. This one (Ellie) smiled at me. Not even kidding. Ellie also took me for a ride, and when I paid [the man sitting on top of Ellie] Ellie took the money in his trunk and passed it up. I hope they split it 50/50.

#3 - If you go to India, you can jump extra high. People will try and jump into your photo though, so beware.

#4 - If you go to India, you can stay in these amazing huts right on the beach! For as cheap as a cheap hut right on the beach in India. Not even kidding. The one of the left was ours. You might be surprised to know that the bright orange colour lulls you off to sleep at night.

#5 - If you go to India, you can take your friends. Probably, you won't have as fun friends as mine, but try anyway. They absolutely totally make it the best time ever!

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Ah India.
You make me laugh. Your Indgrish (India English) is hilarious.
A few favourites from the last few weeks:

In Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia now....
with a few more stories from India still to come....

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Too Much Happy

My new friend Arookooma is an elephant who became a lion and he lives inside a Bollywood musical. Life is too good not to sing.

During the last week, we've been camping at Avalanche.

It's this secret spot that took us 2 1/2 hours by car, 10 hours night train, 5 hours steam train, 1 hour crazy bus ride, 1 hour army truck-craziest-ride-of-my-life, and a 2 hour hike to reach. It's away from everything - from the crazy noise and pollution of the Indian cities and towns. It would have been quiet, peaceful and relaxing.

Except that we brought along a gypsy tribe. Mostly kids, 60 of them made the trek with us to reach this amazing camp.

There was no peace. No quiet. No relaxation. On the agenda was kayaking, abseilling, archery, and more....these kids had never done anything like this and the looks on their faces was priceless as they felt themselves 'balance' on water or be held by a rope on a cliff face for the first time.

I can't explain how big this new experience was for them. It was quite cold in Avalance - we were almost 3000 meters up and most of the tribe had never been in cold weather in their lives. Quite a shock to discover 0 degrees for the first time!

The change in the camp over the few days was amazing. The change of atmosphere was tangible, with much tension in this new place changing to a real joy among the tribe by the end, and a tangible peace.

Not just a crazy an experience for them - it's been quite a ride for me as well. My name to the Indians sounds like Kali - the indian goddess of darkness. I should have made up a new name from the beginning but at least they all remembered my name.

I now have excellent thigh muscles from all the squatting. My thighs will be huge by the end of this trip.

I now know that using your clothes for a pillow is not all it's cracked up to be. Especially when your clothes are dirty. Very dirty.

Washing your hair with a tiny bucket is ok. Washing alongside lots of Indian gypsy girls is quite the experience. Please nits, stay away. I like my nit-free hair!

Curry for breakfast lunch and dinner is ok. I'm quite converted. Actually I'm quite converted to Indian food. They had the audacity to give me eggs and toast for breakfast the other morning and I was surprised to find myself disappointed! Ah!

Life IS a musical. Arakooma joined my activity group (the Lions) because he'd lost track of his group (the Elephants). I was treated to his singing morning noon and night, as he found himself attached to me most of the time. At first I tried to lose him. He had way too much energy for me - but he was too sleuthy for me and we became friends.

He loved everything, and one day he asked me if I was happy. I said yes, very happy. I asked him the same. With fists clenched and the biggest smile on his face, he told me he was too much happy. Too much happy. What a wonderful place to be in!

I loved his joy and his singing and dancing made me laugh. He'd skip round trees and throw his arms out while he sang. I think he really thought he was in a musical. His and the gypsies' joy was beautifuly contagious.
Am loving India and am so thankful for the wonderful time in Avalanche. A few more days here in Mamallapurum (with a wedding included) and then we're on to Goa.
Too much happy.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Of MICE (actually rats) and MEN (naked) (stoned) (angry)

The rats I've seen here are the size of small dogs. If I was a small dog, I would not want to meet one of these in a dark alley.

The men I've seen here are not the size of small dogs. They live in a world of social graces far different to my own. A visit to a Jain temple in Kolkata yielded some interesting results. Sometimes cool unique stuff happens and I'm really happy to be in the right place at the right time. This was NOT one of those times. Too much nakedness and nowhere to hide. Other people taking their shoes off and bowing low on the ground before the NAKED man with the very large stomach. I was wearing hiking shoes. These babies don't just come off at a moment's notice. And so I stand there awkwardly. Bowing doesn't show off my best features anyway.

STONED foreign man sat next to me that evening doing the best he could to hammer his hash flat (to save 20 rupees on the postage) so that he could post it home. I could have done a much better job, however I wish to stay out of jail for the next 20 years.

ANGRY man was our taxi driver. We managed to haggle a good price for our trip home , however I feared for my life many times during that journey. So much anger. It seemed like a good idea at the time - to save 10 rupees (20 cents) but imagine if I died because of scrimping on 20 cents?!

India English makes me laugh all the time.

Favourite advertisement of the week?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Kolkata: Seeti of Joy

The letters and numbers of the keyboard are painted on. I'm paying 10 cents for an hour of internet usage (the sign on the wall says 'not negotiable - no bargaining plz.'
I'm not sure about the chicken Jasmin ate for lunch, however the naans I had were so good I had two.
I don't think I'm quite as shocked as I was a few days ago. I can now walk the streets with less fear of being hit by any passing taxi, bus, rickshaw, bicycle, motorbike, auto rickshaw or cow.
My ears will never be the same after all constant ringing of horns, but I'm enjoying the 4am prayers that are sang across the city.
My nose and throat may take weeks to recover from the smog that hangs in the air, and I'm thus inhaling but the food is too good to even relate.
A motorbike tour around the city yesterday was the funnest thing yet. My rear is a little sore today. I'm sure we nearly died many times, thankfully all I had to do was close my eyes and hold on.
There is such a beautiful grace to be found amongst the sisters at the Motherhouse. I can't even put it into words. They let us join in with their prayers and mass and welcome us into their space. They are kind enough to include us in their tasks and to patiently show us how things are to be done in Shishu Bhaven, the home for children we have spent a couple of days in.
I was humbled by a visit to the Missionaries of Charity Leprosy Mission this morning - they keep such a pride in their center and home and it seems to be run self-sufficiently and they also make items that are needed and used at the other homes of the Missionaries of Charity.
I feel so blessed to be here - also not to have not fallen prey to the India stomach bug yet. May it stay that way.
2 more days in Kolkata - the Seeti (this means horn in Hindi - and it there are more than enough here!) of Joy.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Dear Sasha

Dear Sasha.

I know you remember my name. You asked me at least 10 times and we only sat together for 20 minutes at the most. It's just a little awkward for me and everyone in the vicinity to hear me repeat my name so much.

I know you're only 3 or so, but that's no excuse for telling me repeatedly about your broken truck (it only does one broooooom), all your holiday plans and giving away all your family secrets. Your parents were right there! It was just a little bit awkwardly strange.
(At what stage was I supposed to hush you and steer you away from private family details?)

And really, I think it's great that you're "going on an airplane yewwww!". Really, I do. However, it's not cool to hit the front of vending machines and throw a tantrum when your mother says no to the treats behind the glass.

If you're not careful, your parents might accidentally leave you behind at the airport next time. I didn't know how to politely refuse when they tried to give you away to me today. Please stop "being ever so trying *sigh*" as your mother put it.

Before I go, I'd like to give you a final piece of wisdom for life. It stretches before you like an open road and the world is your oyster.
However, life will not be kind to you if you ever, ever put the family flight boarding passes inside a vending machine again. This is neither good for a vending machine (surgical procedures do not do it kindly) nor for your parent's nerves.

Good luck, Sasha. Please pass my regards on to your parents.