My last day in Austin was a little stressful. It was one of those days where you make a large to-do list with things that have to be done by a certain time and in a particular order. Then no matter how hard you try to be as efficient as possible, something goes wrong and throws everything off.
The main things I needed to do were to buy cat food and litter and to transport my cat, Pandora, from one friend’s house to another (Thanks Paloma and Lilli!). Of course when I got to the store, I realized I forgot to bring my wallet. I also realized that I probably didn’t have enough gas to make it back to the house to get it. My mom had called me earlier to see if I needed any help with anything, so I figured this might be a good time to give her a call. Basically her help consisted of meeting me at Whole Foods to buy $50 worth of cat food and litter, driving with me to the gas station to buy me some gas, going with me to pick up my cat, then sitting in traffic and holding little miss Dora while she howled and peed all over her lap! My poor mom probably wished she hadn’t offered to help. (Thanks Mom!)
Other things I wanted to do were to screen print some vegan t-shirts (Thanks Miguel!), make one last visit to the chiropractor (Thanks Ron!), fax my overseas ballot application to the Travis County voting clerk (because I called and they didn’t receive the one I sent by mail), say goodbye to my former coworkers, empty my camera of ACL photos, send a bunch of various emails, change my voicemail message to say that I’ll be gone for a year, meet with a friend who gave me an awesome money belt (Thanks Daniela!), arrange with my friend in LA to pick me up at the airport (Thanks Addie!), make copies of important documents, eat dinner at Casa De Luz with my family and friends, give my dad instructions on shipping my Syrian visa, malaria pills, and Borneo guidebook to me while I’m abroad, and figure out where to store all the odds and ends leftover in my car (Thanks Dad!)
Anyway, all my errands got done eventually – it just took a lot longer than I estimated it would. I stayed up pretty late packing and preparing, then Miguel, my mom, and I all woke up at 5am to drive to the airport. It was a sad goodbye.
At the airport, I got sent back through security because I had an open container of water. I had to go back to the end of the line, empty out my water bottle, then wait in line all over again. After going through the line, I filled up my water again only to have it open up somehow during the flight and spill all inside my carry on backpack. No big worries. I just used my jacket to mop it up (luckily it’s quick dry), and made a mental note to put more things in plastic bags next time. Anyway, the flight was nice and went by quickly. I watched the sun come up, I saw some mountains as the plane passed over El Paso, I talked to a nice man on my flight, and I ate some tacos that sweet Miguel made me for the flight (yum – I’m really gonna him and his cooking.)