In the story of Tom Sawyer (or was it Huckleberry Finn? I always get those mixed up), he and his buddy Huck Finn stage their own deaths in order to witness the earnest reactions of the townsfolk. During the funeral, endearing statements are made about the deceased, opinions that would not be shared if only they were still alive.
I think I've figured out how to get roughly the same sort of feedback without arranging an elaborate insurance-scam scheme. Thursday was my last day with the company I had spent 9 years getting to know, and during the last week, friends and colleagues that I had known for this time (some of them just people I had seen regularly in the hallways but never got to work with) shared my optimism about our upcoming trip to Africa. The feeling was bittersweet, as I worked alongside some great people, and I knew not when I'd see them next, if ever again (ignoring Facebook for a sec).
Just about every day since then, we've been meeting up with various other groups of friends and supporters for our final sendoffs, and it's a wonderful comfort to know our trip is built upon a foundation of your prayers and support.
I think this is the second public holiday in a row that I stayed at home. Canada Day was spent organizing our trip details, and today was the beginning of our frantic packing mode. Our personal items in our apartment are slowly being sifted into boxes to be packed away in storage, and suitcases that will accompany us. We called up our various banks and credit card companies to redirect mail and alert them of anticipated charges from Africa. Also got a 2gb SD card (which we'll need for photos) RMA'd with Crucial--they said they'd mail it out and we should get it within the week. Lifetime warranty is great, but I still have to mail in the dead card.
Todo (geek list):
- empty out remaining fish tanks of water and a few small cryptocoryne plants - transport all 7 tanks to parents'
- put male Aphyosemion killifish in with the females and see if they'll lay some eggs (their eggs incubate in air, and I'll hatch them when we return by adding water)
- take apart older computers to salvage them for their memory, motherboards, and CPU. See how much hardware I can actually bring without exceeding the measly 44lb baggage allowance.
- send outline of the courses I'll be teaching to Pastor Joshua, who runs the school in Ghana
- many other details a bit too boring for a blog
- keep on task...so...little...time. I only time for writing this now because the last 90 minutes tossing and turning in bed seemed pointless. I imagine that as we near our departure date, I'll have more and more trouble falling asleep as I anxiously await our trip and nervously recount what I could be forgetting to do.