Update from the home front:

I know I said in my first post that I would chronicle the good, the bad, and the ugly but I didn’t quite expect to see them all so quickly and in succession!

The Good: Today, my biggest (but not eldest) brother arrived from New York to spend some quality time with baby sis before she ships out and to provide some much needed organizational and muscular help with the packing and storaging. Joe is 3 1/2 years older than me and while we still occasionally lapse into our traditional roles of big brother/little sister, we’ve…well, I’ve been enjoying getting to know him as an adult in recent years so it’s really special to me to have him here, especially as this was supposed to be our year of being on the same continent and now I’m leaving! (And if you know my family at all, being on the same continent really is a special thing.)

The Bad: I did the Target run today…ouch. Mostly toiletries and OTC meds, as well as some cheap undergarments for work that I fully expect to be able to throw away at the end of 4 months but yeah, $200 later…and I haven’t even shelled out for the two pairs of  100% UV wraparound, plastic-framed sunglasses they strongly recommend to keep you from going blind. By the way, you’re not supposed to wear them at the same time…the second pair is just in case something happens to the first. As the Navy SEALS say: “Two is one, one is none.” However, the Target run DID give me the opportunity to have the hilariously unforgettable conversation with my brother of whether I should buy the box of 10 condoms or the box of 36 condoms. This included some rather rude jokes involving penguins and seals, to be sure.

 

 

 

 

 

The Ugly: After Target, on our way past my home to the wash ‘n fold laundry where I had deposited 30 lbs of dirty clothes the day before, my garage door caught my eye and I swerved into the driveway to take a closer look. Yup, broken window. I opened the door and hey, my bike was still there…as were my neighbors’ bikes (we share a garage). And seemingly everything else but wow, look at all that glass. And an upturned bucket…and are those blood splotches? So someone broke into my garage, presumably to steal the bikes (the only things worth stealing really), couldn’t figure out how to get the door open, found a bucket, turned it over and climbed back through the window, dripping blood all over the garage floor but, oddly enough, not outside. I called my landlord first about the broken window and when he found out nothing had been taken, instructed me not to call the police because it would raise his insurance rates. Fortunately, I live not far from the police station and a policeman just happened to drive by. I flagged him down and in no time we had a whole scene on our hands with multiple cars, multiple people in uniform milling about and trying to figure the whole thing out. Oh, and to get in touch with my neighbors, I had to give one of the policemen my landlord’s number. Not 15 minutes later, I got a call back from my landlord blasting me for calling the police when he had told me not to do so. Yeah, if that’s not a sign I should be going to Antarctica, I don’t know what is. But the policemen were all extremely nice and sympathetic about the situation, particularly the one who had had to call my landlord and, as I said, very fortunately nothing was taken.

And to end on a Good note: I received my ticket info as well as my baggage tags – super cool! AND I got to cuddle my almost-one-year-old cousin and have dinner with my aunt and uncle. Yay for family who are similarly excited by this adventure!

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