Getting to the good stuff.

Well, it’s been barely organized chaos for the last few days but I seem to have survived, largely thanks to the help and patience of my friends. On Sunday, I had a great night out with them to celebrate and enjoy being together before I head to “The Ice.

On Monday, I dropped my brother off to head back to New York and grad school and went back to shopping, packing, sorting, boxing, lifting, etc. I’ve managed to rip off a toenail completely, give myself a blood blister on my left index finger, and am covered in assorted bruises – when you’re crunched for time, packing becomes a full-contact sport, apparently.

I tried to maintain some semblance of organization but I’m not sure how well I did – when you’re packing for an extended trip to a climate and an environment that you’re not familiar with and you’re not sure what to expect, AND you need to make sure you have clothes available for 85+ degree F weather where you are, AND you’re moving out of your apartment into a storage unit, things can get a little insane and you will even find yourself taking over your friends’ piano.

So what AM I taking? Well, I’m still not convinced I’m going to have enough warm things but, then again, I’m not working outside either and I know how to dress in a kitchen at least, right? And hopefully I can borrow stuff if I’m really stuck. I was going to leave my computer behind since it’s old and heavy and slow and was going to be more of a burden than a boon but my tech staff (KC and Tiffany) and I ran into some problems with iTunes downloads synching to my iPod so it wound up coming along with me. But the iPod is fully stocked with videos and music thanks to Raj and Jenn, for whom I cooked every Monday for the past year and a half. I also have my iPad fully stocked with books thanks to Tiffany, Karen, and Sadie. Bed linens and pillows are provided but towels aren’t, so that was a must. Since it’s dorm living, I also figured a robe and shower flip-flops would come in handy too. Otherwise, it’s supposedly T-shirt warm in the buildings so I packed about 6 of those – including some suitably nerdy ones compliments of KC and Tiffany’s wardrobe. There are three gyms and I’ve heard tell of a marathon/1/2 that is supposed to happen down there at some point (but I’m getting conflicting info on when) and since that would be AMAZING to be able to say I’ve run a marathon on Antarctica, I picked up a new pair of shoes (neither of my old ones would support that level of training) and some thin wooly socks – Mizuno’s Breath Thermo line that is supposed to generate its own heat when it gets damp with sweat. We’ll see how those work out. I’ve also heard tell there’s a climbing wall down there so I’ve brought my shoes – I’ve no idea if it’s just bouldering or what but I guess I’m about to find out! As you can see, my packing list has gone through several incarnations:

There’s the basic undergarments/showering section, the work section, the off-work-but-inside section, the off-work-but-outside section, toiletries section, pharmacy section, miscellaneous extras section, and the work tools section. And this is all before the Extreme Cold Weather Gear gets issued in Christchurch! One thing’s for certain, Jory definitely thinks the Munster flag is a “must-pack”!

So I guess we’ll see how things shake out with the packing. In the moving-out department, I’m officially out of the apartment as of today – completely empty etc. However, according to the terms of my lease, I’m obligated have the carpets and blinds professionally cleaned. Well, I got the blinds done a week ago and had booked the carpets for today BUT then the guy called me back and said he’d double-booked but guess what? He could have someone there first thing Friday morning! So thankfully, Sadie’s going to take care of being there for me and then I should be good to go. So that’s pretty much it – I’m packed, I’m stored, I’m fed, I’m clean – even squeezed in a waxing appointment today! I would have liked to pick up one more fleece and pair of windpants but alas, we all have priorities and used that time instead to go say goodbye to the Schwab crew – Chef Raul was one of my referees for this job so I figured that was the right thing to do. Then I had to get home and ensure I had enough time to calculate and pay my sales tax for the last quarter as well as this one (it’ll be due while I’m away). And KC and Tiffany have been undeniably patient with my mess in their house as I transitioned out of my apartment, making sure I had an adequate supply of beer and wine to keep me calm(er). So that’s about it, I’m off to the airport in about 30 minutes and let’s hope that whatever I’ve forgotten can be lived without.

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