Staging, Spending, and Stuff

Staging — Today I received my much-anticipated staging email! Here are the goods:

  • Check-in is at 12:30pm on December 1st, 2013 in Philly
  • December 1st: workshops 2:00pm – 7:00pm, business casual attire
  • December 2nd: 8:00am check-out, 8:30am departure for airport
  • Flight Itinerary: Air Brussels departing from JFK  (7 hrs, 25 min) and arriving in Brussels in the morning. Air Brussels departing from Brussels after a 5 hr layover (8 hrs, 30 min) and arriving in Conakry, Guinea at 6:55pm on December 3rd.

The hotel and flight is all paid for! Luckily for me, I live close to Philadelphia and won’t have to take an additional flight but I know off the top of my head that a few people in my stage are from California — sorry guys, but sucks to be you ;). I look forward to spending my last night in America (for a while…not forever!!!) in Philly. This city means a lot to me. I spent a good chunk of my college years at house parties and concerts, underground and big name, in this city and I’ve eaten my fair share of cheesesteaks. One last night on South Street topped off with a steak (wiz wit) sounds perfect.

Spending — I’ve been a good girl and have done as I said I would in my last update… bought the frickin’ world! Well, maybe that’s over-exaggerating, but as the boxes begin to pour into our house it may seem that way to our neighbors. Some things I’ve bought:

  • hammock w/ rain fly and mosquito net for those hot Guinean nights and travel adventures
  • chacos — sandals and waterproof hiking boots
  • solar charger, 4 watts
  • portable speakers, rechargeable
  • drakon 45 by marmot aka awesome hiking pack
  • 2 lightcap 300s aka water bottles with solar panel LED caps that transform it from a bottle by day to a lantern by night (AWESOME, RIGHT??)
  • alert whistle / compass / waterproof matches / lanyard combo
  • sunglasses to go over my regular glasses (gonna be a real fashionable look y’all)
  • freeze-dried meals…because who doesn’t go crazy for re-hydrated beef stroganoff?

As you can see, I’m doing good in the crap department! I still need a few small items — knife, battery fan, kitchen supplies, clothing items — but for the most part I am done shopping. I feel like a little kid at Christmas waiting for these packages to arrive, but I guess it almost is Hannukah so it’s pretty fitting. The next task is to pack it all!!

Stuff — My mood is pretty good these days. Mostly, I’m excited. This is my last week at work and… I never thought I’d hear myself utter these words… but I’ll really miss it. I have some awesome co-workers who, aside from their inability to understand my desires to join the Peace Corps, really make my Monday – Friday pretty awesome. So, here’s to you Sheehy Glen Burnie! I’ll miss you guys! And if any of my readers are looking for a car… we got some fine salesmen! 😉

The next few weeks are probably going to fly by and be somewhat of a blur. I’m trying to pack it all in, though! The week before Thanksgiving, my mother and sister and I are traveling to Florida for my cousin’s bar mitzvah. That will be a nice family adventure and a good way to get my mind off of my upcoming trip — plus it’s gonna be gorgeous and I’m totally hitting the water! Thanksgiving / Hannukah / Thanksukah / Hannugiving is going to be a blast. Turkey and latkes, at once? I’m super glad I’ll be home to enjoy that with my family.

Basically, I’m excited. And ready. Well — as ready as anyone ever is in these situations.

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