Saturday, August 20, 2005

Trip Preperations 1

I got a call from Sam couple days ago. If you've seen the sheet of photos from PacRim, you know Sam as the mangy haired goober with that deranged smile. Sam is one of guys on the trip I imagine I will get along best with, seeing as we share common interest in laziness, and making fun of the other people of the trip. I've also known Sam for a little while, since we've both been rowing with the UPS Crew this past two years. He's been working at a summer camp in Minniesota all summer, but has used the time to his advantage, pursuing his hobbies of making fun of punky teenagers, and mutting swearwords under his breath while in front of the 7th graders.

Sam and I have both waited to the last days of our summer before we started to tackle the hefty to do list that comes along with the PacRim preperation. I still need to get antimalarial drugs, pants, and maybe a CD player. Sam needed to pick a topic for his research thesis. I suppose I'm in slightly better shape. It is daunting to consider a whole years worth of business must be taken care of by the end of the week. I have transfered money, gotten a whole battery of vaccinations, seen a hand full of travel physicians, filled out a stack of forms, and, of course, partially filled the 40 pound capacity of my backpack that will be my life while abroad. It is now less than a week until I leave, and this thoughts and musings on the near future are growing more vivid...
"Nine days from today, and I'll be on a flight across the largest ocean in the world. I'll have said my final good byes to my friends back in Norman and Stillwater. People will have been in the SeaTac airport to see us off. After that, I'll will step foot in a foreign continent for the first time, first time surrounded by people who don't speak english, don't use sit-down toliets nor even worry about getting a summer tan. Ten days from today and I will be a world-flippin-traveler..."

I've been getting a lot more eager as the date for the trip gets closer and the trip has become more real in my head. Also, occasionally, and inescapably, there's been the couple bouts of fear. Its always inexpressible and irrational and evetually, gone before I realized it was there. But in the end, I'm glad the fear is there, it means I'm still capable of being excited by what I'm doing, and means what I am doing is undoubtably going to force me to grow some more. And that's why I'm here.

But little worries are growing. What if internet filters won't allow me to communicate to my friends while I'm in china? What if I'm in a situation were my safety depends on communicating without using english? What if people on the trip find this website, start reading my postings and stop talking to me because of all the things I say about them?

Well, for now, I'm still in Tulsa, I still need to pack, see my friends, ensure my insurence will cover me, and brush up on Mongolian, French, Chinese, Japanese and maybe, just maybe, work on my thesis.



Whenever my dad sets something up, he does a test. When he set up his answering machine, he left himself a long, detailed test message from his cell phone, while standing right beside the machine. The test message even included the phrase "testing, 1, 2, 3, testing." Man, it was as if he doing a mike check at the Grand Ole' Opry.

Well, now he should at least be happy to know dorkiness is apparently genetic.