Dear Landlocked Citizen,

I miss you, too. Terribly.

But let me rewind.

In your last letter, you said you don’t remember when we first met—but I sure do. Your dad is right, it was Hawaii to Canada in ‘94—you held my hand and pointed at the airplanes with this awestruck smile. No one could resist that smile.

I couldn’t wait to travel with you for the rest of our lives.

So, our history doesn’t make this any easier—as you know, it makes all this harder. I heard the rumors of travel bans early on. I hoped it wouldn’t come to this—I prayed it wouldn’t. We made our plans until the very last moment. The trip to Mexico was so close.

But now it’s not—and I’m sorry.

I’m so sorry.

I wish I could tell you when we could meet again. I wish I could circle the date on your calendar. I wish I could show up at your doorstep in New Zealand and whisk you away to a far-off land.

I wish a lot of things.

Please know I‘m not pretending I can fix a gaping wound with an inch-long band-aid. I know that me being sorry doesn’t change how hard this is. You deal with enough denial already. I won’t do that to you.

I guess… what I’m trying to say is… I care.

And I miss you, too.

I miss the way you’d stand in the check-in line, juggling your New Zealand and USA passports. I miss the way you still didn’t remember which one to use, no matter how many times you’d done it before. I miss the way you’d search for your departure gate and get a little giddy at takeoff.

You may have signed your letter, “Landlocked Citizen”—but you and I both know that‘s not you. Sure, it’s describes your current circumstances.

But it’s not you.

You’re not a landlocked citizen, not really.

There’s an international heart beating inside of you.

No amount of travel restrictions will ever change that.

So, keep dreaming.

I’m not going anywhere.

See you soon,

International Travel