30 August 2010

My departure is quickly arriving. (Did you see what I did there? I. Am. Hilarious) I leave in just eleven days. Yikes, is that number getting small. I'm starting to getting really antsy, like I have a tightly wound ball in my chest. It's part anxiety, party excitement, and part pure sadness. I finally started packing today, and I had this moment where I was trying to decide which t-shirt to bring, and it really hit me. I have to actually decide what to bring and what to leave behind. How do you know what part of you deserves to come? And then there are those things that you can't bring with you, like your family. Suddenly that ocean is looking fairly vast.

23 August 2010

18 Days

In just 18 short days I will be leaving. I still have a lot to do. It's a really big struggle to not feel overwhelmed. It seems like I have a lot of time, but I know that the time will just fly by. All of a sudden it will be my last week and I will have done nothing. I'll be running around town like a mad woman trying to get everything together, and my former self will be laughing at my frantic self.

All of a sudden I have to start packing! It's crazy, but that time is here. I bought some of those space saver bags that you can vacuum all of the air out of. Hopefully this will help me when I move. I'm a little worried that I won't be able to fit everything! Today I am going to try and organize a lot of my school things and my room. It was a little weird to think about it, especially about having to pretty much box up my room. How strange is that? It was a moment where I all of a sudden realized that I would be moving far far away. There is no more need for my room to look lived in. Instead, it's time for the phase where my room becomes a bit more like a guest room, just waiting for a visitor.

02 August 2010

Top 10 Things I'll Miss

There are certain things that you just can't get in new places. It's not like they're the completely nonexistent, it's more like they're just not the same. Below is my list of Top 10 Things I Will Miss next year while I am gone. These are all going to sound like really silly and trivial things, but when you go through a full year without them, you begin to miss them like none other.

10. The Daily Show

Oh, I can watch it really illegally and creepily online. But the best part about staying in on a weeknight is vegging out on the couch and watching The Daily Show with my Dad.

9. Cheeseburgers

I get freaked out with Mad Cow Disease -- it seems to break out every few years in the UK. I probably won't have much beef at all when I'm there. When I do finally land back in the states, I want to be greeted with a big, juicy burger.

8. Peanut Butter

Peanut Butter is fairly awful over there. There’s no Jiffy or Peter Pan, and everything they have is not as creamy or delicious. This is one of those household staples that you don’t miss until you don’t have it anymore.

7. Shopping Malls

America does it right. Shopping malls here are outrageously big, the food is disgustingly delicious, and you can usually find anything you could desire in one stop. Plus, I'll miss those little old ladies that go to the mall with a buddy and speed walk the entire thing. Hey, it's a good way to get a walk in during those Chicago winters.

6. Mexican Food

I suppose it’s our proximity to Mexico itself, but there are a ton of really great Mexican places in this country. In Scotland, not so much.

5. Driving

Just crossing the street is intimidating. I have to actually stop and remind myself to look the other way. I can’t even imagine what it would be like to reverse absolutely everything that I do now while driving. Plus, there is something really comforting about driving around town with the windows down and the radio turned up.

4. Target

There is something to be said for the megastore. It's wonderful to have a place where you can buy, in one stop, a new coffee maker, milk, DVDs, and clothes. Target is like the definition of American capitalism, and I will miss their super discounts while I'm gone.

3. Television

This particular entry reallllly makes me sound American, but it's hard to live without my mindless entertainment. Glee, Mad Men, 30 Rock, Greek, Modern Family...I really just like lounging on the couch and watching a new episode when it premieres. It's just not the same if you have to hunt for the episode on some sketchball website. Besides the TV shows that I will miss, I won’t even have a TV there. You have to pay a television tax, which just seems really strange to me, but it basically eliminates my ability to lay around and watch a 16 and Pregnant marathon. Don't judge - you know you do it too.

2. Football Season

Football – not soccer football, but football football – is not even on their radar. So many Sundays of my life were spent sitting with my family in the family room. There would always be a fire going in the fireplace and my mom would make a ton of food.

1. Thanksgiving

Perhaps the greatest injustice of all! How dare it not be recognized elsewhere in the world? It was so strange having to skip class on the day. I'm used to a big turkey dinner, complete with stuffing and mashed potatoes and gravy and pie pie pie! My mom cooks a wonderfully delicious dinner. We tried to cook our own dinner the last time I was there, and it was just not the same. First of all, I could not find an actual turkey anywhere. We ended up settling for a chicken, our mashed potatoes were lumpy for lack of an electric mixer, and our stuffing and gravy came out of a package. Worst of all? The call home when I realized that my entire family was together without me.