martes, 15 de febrero de 2011

the miscellaneous pile

I'm all packed. In about twelve hours I'll be on my way. I've packed my life into my backpack. My backpack has a name. It's Alex, and when packed to full capacity, it's the size of a six-year-old child. I got a Camelbak as a present from D and have yet to name it. I'm also taking a purse and my longboard (skateboard) with me. I feel like that's about all I will need.

I'm a good packer. Everything fit. My mom taught me well. I don't particularly enjoy packing, and that's mainly due to the items I categorize as miscellaneous. You see, before I pack, I always sort my stuff. Shirts, pants, skirts, dresses, underwear, socks, shoes, etc. But then there are the items that don't fit in any of these categories, the not-wearable items that for some reason I keep trekking across the world with me.

The miscellaneous pile is a total pain in the ass to pack. I always stare long and hard at the miscellaneous pile and it makes me not want to proceed with the process. I'm not sure why I insist on having a miscellaneous pile, but it's always there and it always sucks. Except it doesn't really, it's awesome. The miscellaneous pile has items like:

* My wooden turtle, elephant and moose (buffalo?...whose legs and horns have broken and been super-glued more times than I can remember)
* My plastic goat and cat
* 17 or so pictures that just live freely in my luggage or nightstand (whenever I have one)
* My iPod, kindle and camera chargers
* A Juan Manuel Serrat cassette tape
* Belts
* My penguin mirror
* Gori
* Sunglasses (these are the worst)
* An elephant made out of buffalo skin

Now you would think I could do without the traveling zoo, but I can't. And every time I move, I realize that it keeps growing. People tend to give me animals, and sometimes I buy them too. This before-mentioned collection would be larger, but some have deserted the pack. There's a lion (Boduka) somewhere in Venezuela. There's Onte, my trusty rhinoceros; he keeps an eye on mom here in the US while I'm away. There used to be a dinosaur (Tuani) somewhere in D's car, but that was three cars ago, so who knows where he ended up. Then there's Gori. He hasn't deserted, in fact, he is king of all. Gori is a stuffed gorilla that has gone everywhere with me. He's the definition of awesome. He's cool enough to rock a hot pink climbing rope and If I'm spending the night anywhere, he's there.

Anyway, as I always do, I managed to successfully find a spot for each of these items in either Alex, the Camelbak or the purse. My zoo and my pictures and my mirror and everything else I didn't list may be a little difficult at times, but there's nothing I love more than settling in somewhere new and lining up all my animals, and setting up all my random little things. And just like that, the miscellaneous pile is the reason I'm able to make wherever I am my home.

martes, 8 de febrero de 2011

pigs in the sky

I guess I'm really going through with this.

I bought my one-way ticket to Auckland for next week. Even though I leave on the 15th, I won't arrive until the 17th - that's how far my dart is sending me...two days away. I go from Seattle to Los Angeles, then I have a short layover in Fiji before arriving in Kiwiland. Is it wrong that I secretly wish for something minor to be missing from the plane at boarding so I can stay in Fiji for a couple of days? It just looks so pretty. Maybe my dart will land there next.

I've told a couple of people about my decision. Most will probably find out from them, others from this blog, and others just won't have any idea and will ask me in the next email: "so where in the world are you now?"

I always get mixed reactions when I make announcements like this. Grandma No.1 was less than thrilled with the idea. She's just wondering about when I'll finally drop this traveling nonsense, settle down and give her some great grandkids. Grandma No.2 was her usual self, and said her usual words: "If this is what you want to do, then this is what you ought to do." Mom is her lovely, supportive self, and just wants me to leave already so she can come visit. Bro No.1 thinks I'm slightly random, and I guess that goes for Bro No.2 as well. Some friends think I'm crazy, some think I'm cool, and I guess the rest have given up on understanding my ways and say things like "sweet"...which has the same tone as the "sure they can" you'd tell a crazy person if they approached you and told you that, in fact, pigs actually can fly.

Maybe traveling is nonsense, and maybe eventually I'll have a picket fence. I know I'm random and crazy and cool and I have no interest in understanding my own ways. Maybe the crazy person has got it right, and we're just too close minded to see the pigs in the sky. Whatever. This is just what I do. I do what I want. I'm super lucky, I have this brain that tells me I can do whatever I want to do. Maybe it's how I was raised, maybe my brain is just extra awesome, who knows. But to all that said: "you can't just throw a dart and go wherever!" Guess what?: I CAN!

Peace out.

domingo, 6 de febrero de 2011

new zealand

So the dart landed on New Zealand. In a little over a week I'll be heading there and I'll be filling this blog with whatever happens next.

Now lets back up a little bit. I don't know how or when I came up with this whole dart idea, but having a steady job hadn't given me a chance to execute it. I quit said steady job in December, and finding myself without anything to do, thoughts of maps and darts came back to mind. I got darts as a Christmas present and finally, at the end of January, went through with the plan. I came up with this:

Throwing the dart means committing to the dart - wherever it lands, that's where I go. With the following rules:

1. I use the dart to pick a country, not a city - regardless of where in a country the dart lands, I plan to go and explore the entire land, therefore the city it lands on doesn't dictate where I go.

2. If the dart lands on water, I throw again - I don't want to live in the middle of the ocean. I don't like boats much anyway, something about not seeing land freaks me out.

3. If the dart lands on a country I've already been in, I throw again - the whole point of this is to see new places.

4. If the dart lands on uninhabited land, I throw again - as much as I love new places, building myself an igloo in Antarctica sounds like an awful idea.

That's about it. My take on the world is ON!

sábado, 5 de febrero de 2011