I am moving to Asia in THREE days, where I'll spend the next 8 months. I arrive July 28, 2011 and my return flight (although subject to change) is for March 15, 2012.
In three days, I will be flying to Taipei, Taiwan where I'll spend the first month settling in, taking a 3-week express Mandarin course, traveling around the island and hopefully making some friends who will be joining me for my next phase of travel...
Taipei as my homebase, I will be traveling to: Thailand, Laos, Vietnam, Cambodia, maybe Indonesia, China, Korea, maybe Japan, India, Nepal.
How do I feel? Everything. Super excited, sometimes nervous, overwhelmed by the enormous uncertainty ahead while traveling in Asia and all the unknowns of when I return, almost feel numb and as though it isn't really happening...but wow, it definitely is...and occssionally i feel pride and relief. I'm doing something I've always wanted to do...I've thought about this trip in particular for about a year now, all those countdowns and mini checkpoints, have all led to this moment...
Many of you have asked me, do I plan to blog? I do! I plan to update at least this site a couple times a month, so please subscribe and check back.
As a heads up, beyond my blog, I don't plan on being very connected to the outside world. In my Taipei studio, I will not have Internet and do not plan on spending hours in Internet cafes. I also will not have a smartphone, just a basic phone to make mostly local calls. I will use Skype with family and close friends. I will write you all postcards and send occasional e-mails. Though, to really get the best, maybe more colorful updates from me, I'd rely on this site.
In the meantime, peruse the pictures above. They summarize the bulk of my preparations. Waiting in line for a Visa, getting my Visa, getting my vaccinations, and packing including all the books I plan on reading and writing while there.
Lastly, for the sentiments...I will miss you all, and invite you to comment and leave me your life updates, travel tips or general encouragement; I'd love to hear from you and am positive I'll have moments of missing you and America deeply.
'Til next time and with love,