01/01/2004: Happy New Year! I hope that everyone had a good time ringing in 2004.
I get to leave a week from Saturday! That doesn't sound like a long time at all. I feel like I should be preparing, like sorting out the clothes and things I will take with me. Ooh, I am excited. This part, the anticipation, the preplanning, is always the hardest. It's too easy to overthink things. Especially since I'll basically only be gone a week, I have to force myself to calm down and quit worrying about buying the right clothes and accessories. I am hoping to be a little more spontaneous on this trip, but if that doesn't work out, oh well. Thinking about a day-tour to the Loire Chateaux, a morning (at least) spent in Chartres, a couple days in Brussels, plenty of time to wander museums, and a day or two flaner: an archaic French term meaning to meander the city, not exactly aimlessly, but for exploring, lazily, indulgently. The sort of day where you people watch, eat street vendor treats, stroll casually down the Champs Elysees or the back streets near your hotel, sketching, photographing, envisioning that the entire city exists for your sole pleasure.
With all this contemplation of this fast-approaching adventure, my mind is more and more drawn to thinking about my next adventure. Since I don't have money for extended travel, I am planning to move to another area of the US and get a new and different job. It is thrilling and scary and uncertain, but necessary. I am not complacent, but just plain bored with my job. I am seeking a new place for myself, where I am challenged to learn entirely new things, meet entirely new people, create a fulfilling adult life.