I’m packed. In spite of all our efforts (Kevin even took the Tylenol and vitamins out of their boxes in attempt to lower the weight), I’m checking two bags. Having to pack for professional and casual settings, with an equal opportunity for chilly rain and pleasant sun, meant I had to take a lot more clothing than I really wanted to. Plus the transatlantic flight has a lower weight maximum than the first leg – 44 pounds versus 50. I hate that I’m going to be the obvious tourist, staggering around with a huge suitcase, a duffel, laptop bag, and purse, but…I’ll be gone for three months. I’m only bringing three pairs of shoes, anyway, and two of those are for the office. I think I did pretty well.
We also went to Target today so I could get a few terrible American snacks, specifically fruit snacks and Gummi Life Savers. Nothing chocolate, because Europe already has plenty of delicious chocolate, just waiting for me amidst all the secondhand-book shops and farmer’s markets.
Speaking of books, I’m bringing three: “Archangel” by Sharon Shinn, “Snow Flower and the Secret Fan” by Lisa See, and “The Namesake” by Jhumpa Lahiri. I’ve never read “Snow Flower” before, but I’m saving it for when I’m landed – I’ve read “Archangel” a couple times, but I like to have something familiar to read on the plane after staggering around looking for the gate. At one point I was going to bring five books, but Kevin pointed out that I was going to buy a bunch in the second-hand shops anyway, so why bring the extra weight?
I could bluster about how I’m going to budget very carefully and subsist on whatever the Irish equivalent of Top Ramen is, but I’m saving thirty euros a week by living on campus, so I may treat myself here and there.
Just a little.
So long, America – see you in October.