It’s official, tomorrow is my last full day here in the States hopefully for a while. I’m only freaking out a little bit. Mostly I’ve been avoiding packing for the last week, hoping that fairies will show up and magically do it for me. But I guess it’s going to have to get done tomorrow, or I’ll be in some trouble. Handily, I sold my car today, so I can’t escape and avoid it again tomorrow.

That’s right, I SOLD MY CAR. That means, that this really better work out well, otherwise I’m going to have to go through the whole god-awful car payment process again. As I was driving around today, I realized how stupid it really is that we all spend so much money on things that become basically worthless. (I’ll now be jumping on the mass-transit train with Aaron). Which is of course what they told me when I bought it (this was when the parents didn’t want me to buy one), but, it’s not like I really had an option. Living where we do, transportation is a necessity, not a luxury. So the car-selling story was really pretty fun. I listed on Craigslist for awhile… got a lot of bogus offers, a few bites, but nothing panned out. Okay, fine, I’ll go to Carmax and get an offer, because they’ll buy anything. Let me preface this by saying that Blue Book value on my car in fair condition was $3140
(fair is defined as:

  • Some mechanical or cosmetic defects and needs servicing but is still in reasonable running condition
  • Clean title history, the paint, body and/or interior need work performed by a professional.
  • Tires may need to be replaced.
  • There may be some repairable rust damage.)

  • I would have put the car somewhere in between good and fair, there are a few tiny rust spots, but nothing major, and no mechanical problems whatsoever, but whatever. Carmax, the cheap bastards, offered me $1700. Thank God I had Alicia there with me so someone else was there with me to walk out going “Oh My God Are They Serious??” Ridiculous. So I got home, relisted it on CL for $3200 OBO, need to sell ASAP, and had 2 calls and 2 emails within 10 minutes. I ended up not getting quite as much as I wanted, but anything’s better than $1700. I was honestly kind of in shock. But I was pretty sad to see it go. I always said I’d drive it until it died… and I was quite bummed watching those tail lights disappear down the street. I think that means I’m going to be a complete mess when I drop Frodo off on Wednesday. I just keep telling myself no car means it’s time to go, and that’s a good thing.

    Frodo keeps hopping in and out of my suitcase and then cuddling up to my leg. I think he knows what’s up here. I’ve got to get all his stuff together tomorrow too… which means digging small sparkly balls out from under the fridge and other such fun tasks. I know John and Kay will take good care of him… and I’ve got them enough supplies for about 10 years, so hopefully they won’t have to shell out any cash for him. He had his shots updated last week too, poor guy was sore for two days, but at least I got that done and they won’t have to handle any of that. It’s ridiculous how much stuff pops up that you don’t even think about until you have to go.

    But it’s time to stop thinking about things… and time to head out. I’m attempting to only bring my big suitcase, laptop bag and camera bag. I’m allowed 2 checked bags totaling 80 lbs, but I’m really hoping to avoid that. According to the delightful Rick Steve’s travel website, your bag should only weigh 20% of your body weight, preferably no more than 20 lbs. So apparently Rick’s web site caters to the 100-lb. woman. Top notch. I think if I pop it out, I can get away with it. I think if I bring 2, I’ll end up hurting myself for it later. Besides, if all works out and I’m still there in the summer, I can always have the parents ship summer stuff (which I’m sure they’ll love). It’s still a lot to worry about. But I feel good… it’s about time to stop thinking about things I want to do, and do them.

    Oooh… almost forgot… the stuff I made for Christmas came out awesome. The Greek Pinwheels (puff pastry w/a cream cheese, feta, s.d. tomato, olive, artichoke, etc.) were my fave, but the Cherry & Brie Puffs were also a big hit. I also made Spicy Pepper Crab Cakes, which were pretty good. I think if I had put ALL the spicy stuff in, they would have been better, but I kept it toned down for the grandma’s benefit. Also if the meat dept. had been open, I could have used fresh crab instead of canned, and I think that would’ve been better. But there was no way I was going to the grocery store earlier than 10pm two days before Christmas. Not happening. But now I need to get back to staring at my suitcase and willing it to pack itself. In the air in two days!!


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