Tuesday, February 19, 2013

All My Bags Are Packed

Sorry for the prolonged silence, but it's been a busy time.  Since Nov. 17, 2012, when I arrived back home in Florida, I've visited friends in Tucson and Boston and attended a beautiful (and fun!) wedding in the Detroit area.

I also moved back into my house, unpacking and getting everything settled where it belongs.  That was the normal pain that moving is but it felt good to have everything in its place again.  It also helped me confirm how much I love my home.

I've applied for dozens of jobs and have had a couple of potentially promising conversations.  I've also reconnected with local friends and enjoyed just chilling, cooking and being home.

I've eaten Mexican food by the plateful along with more cheese than I care to admit.  Given less "mandatory" exercise that living in Samoa required and more fattening food, it has not been a diet friendly time.

I've also used the excuse of the stress that comes with readjustment, as well as the excitement/stress of preparing to head to Malawi for three months of work.

Today, I'm ready to leave for Malawi.  I just have to finish cleaning out the fridge, grab a shower and toss my toiletry items in my carry on.  Because of my elite status (their term not mine) on Sky Team, I'm allowed to check three bags. I don't want to schlep that much junk around though so am taking one checked bag (large enough to haul a body in) and a roll aboard with a few changes of clothes and all the stuff I need for comfort on the plane.

I've flown well over a million miles and think I've got the flight prep thing pretty much down.  Here's what I'm taking on the plane:

  • Down throw - it was a gift years ago from Greg and Vicki and it is perfect.  It folds away to nothing and is awesomely warm.  I have a window exit row on the Detroit to Paris leg and this will keep the chill off.
  • Noise cancelling headphones.  They really do make a difference, plus make listening to the plane movies/music much more pleasant than their $2 earbuds.
  • Saline nasal spray - to keep nasal passages moist in the dry plane air.
  • Eyemask - to keep out the light when I'm trying to catch some zzz's.
  • Inflatable neck pillow.  It completes the geek look and prevents a stiff neck.
  • Hand lotion to try to keep skin moist.
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste because when I wake up after a restless sleep, it helps wake me up and feel fresher.
  • Snacks - hard candies and trail mix.
Now, I have to get moving.  I'll be traveling from 9:00 a.m. Tuesday, February 19 to 12:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 21, if all goes well.  I'll spend Thursday night in Lilongwe (capital of Malawi) and then will take a 4 1/2 hour bus ride to my new home in Blantyre.

I'll have wifi and hope to post photos and updates soon.  I hope you'll follow along in my new adventure.  If you have any questions or things you'd like to hear about, please let me know.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for taking the time to post before your travel to Africa! You really are good at prepping for travel. Look forward to reading about your new adventure... safe travels.