With less than twelve hours before we depart, “the panic” is in full force. “The panic” is the peak in stress that occurs during the final hours leading up to an event. I adopted this phrase from my mother-in-law, who intensely experiences it just before hosting guests for dinner.
The question I’ve been asked most frequently is, “How do you pack for a trip like that?” It has become a triggering question, as I still don’t actually know how to pack for a trip like this… We’ve given it our best guess. Seiji (my husband) and I have researched packing lists for around the world travel, primarily through reading blogs. Admittedly we are not savvy backpackers with any sort of impressive packing abilities. We are the checked luggage and hotel type of people, which provides us a more generous allowance in what we can bring. So far we are equipped with a modest amount of clothing, three to four pairs of shoes each, copious amounts of contact lenses (we both wear dailies unfortunately), a leatherman, power adapters, and security tools to protect our luggage and electronics. I’ll let you know how we fare with what we packed.
The other most commonly asked question pertains to our itinerary, or lack thereof. As of now we have only booked a one-way ticket to Bucharest, Romania along with ten days worth of accommodations. We have a soft itinerary which includes high priority destinations for us but we prefer to maintain flexible plans while traveling. In past experience this strategy has allowed us to spend more time in cities we were really enjoying, and inversely allowed us to leave cities sooner if we weren’t particularly loving them. One other benefit is having the chance to actually absorb the advice of locals and other travelers we’ll meet along the way- their recommendations will definitely influence our itinerary.
The last few weeks have been a flurry of completing tasks which had never crossed our minds while we were in the dreaming phase of this trip. Some of these have included: obtaining an international healthcare plan, pausing our car insurance, preparing in advance for tax season, porting our telephone numbers to a new carrier, contacting our banks, placing bills on autopay, relocating our plants, receiving necessary vaccinations, squeezing in last minute dental cleanings, etc. You might be feeling third party anxiety from reading the abbreviated list or you could be thinking it doesn’t seem all that stressful. It’s the accumulation of all the tasks both small and large, further compounded by the research we did prior to taking action. The overwhelming feeling of stress has temporarily masked my excitement. I look forward to the panic melting away as we take off tomorrow morning.
I think that’s all for now. I’ll update you once we get settled in Bucharest!