The response to this adventure, only in its first stages of infancy, has been incredibly, overwhelmingly positive and I am immensely thankful for that as it's the only thing that has guaranteed I won't tuck my tail between my legs and run like a chicken to a bungalow in Pasadena instead of a cottage in the English countryside. People have told me they think I'm brave, but truthfully I'm just purposely trying not to acknowledge the terrifying reality of what I'm about to do. Don't get me wrong...I'm ecstatically excited with the potential that lays before me. But leaving everything I know behind, from friends to currency to systems of measurement, inspires occasional moments of incredible panic. And so I must say huge thank you to all my friends. To everyone who has drank with me, ate with me, emailed me, trekked to the Valley to see me, voluntarily cleaned my oven or just held my hand, literally and figuratively, as I've stressed and organized through the last few weeks, I could not have made it here without you and therefore, in so many ways, this adventure is yours as well as mine.
One of the biggest surprises for me is that along with anticipation and elation has also come extreme fatigue and a fair amount of depression, the latter of which I attempted to conquer by letting myself sit on the couch on a rainy day and read a trashy romance novel. It helped. But acknowledging the negatives I think is as important as looking forward to the opportunities. As I choked back surprise tears I explained to one close friend that it wasn't that I didn't want to go, but that I wanted everyone to go with me. Having no one close to me there to share in the adventure makes the obviously solitary experience that much more lonely, even while acknowledging that the solitary nature of the experience is what makes it such an adventure. And so I must say thank you to Tami for setting a date to visit...9 months hence, but there ahead is a date that at some point I'll be able to share the life and adventure with those I care most about. I hope and expect she will be only one of many to come and visit.
Tomorrow, Otis, Freebie, Fredo and I set out to Seattle via San Francisco. A day late...there was just too much to do and so our departure was pushed 24 hours. A great, and I think perfect, new home awaits the jittery Fredo, while Freebie and Otis will wait in quarantine purgatory until I can fly them to be with me. The moment we hit the freeway, the adventure will have begun....no more luggage to pack, no more houses to clean. Just an open road...and who knows where we'll end up.