With less than a week to go, nerves and excitement are really setting in. Yesterday was a productive day for planning, getting solid lists of what to do in each city together, hunting through my stack of travel books, and finalizing arrangements with the friends I will be seeing in certain countries. The London/ Ireland portion of the trip is looking solid thanks to my amazingly accommodating friends. Amsterdam should be pretty easy to arrange, and then Lisa will be on her way to spend a week and a half with me in Paris, Interlakin, and Munich. She's been incredibly helpful in getting this part of the trip set. Excited doesn't even begin to describe the emotions I feel as I anticipate all that is ahead.
Yesterday evening, as I sat in the RBC center with my dad, watching my beloved Hurricanes breeze through another astonishing victory, it occurred to me that this will be my last regular season game, and likely the last Canes game I'll see this year. Three months is a long time to be away! I'll also be missing March madness this year, the bulk of Spring, and several other events I have enjoyed in the past with my friends this time of year. I have never gone this long out of my routine and away from home. That in itself is pretty intense to think about. Oh well. I'll just have to substitute my hockey and basketball for soccer games. I'll be spending St. Patty's day in Ireland, Cinco de Mayo in Spain, and Passover in Austria. The thing I'll miss the most is my friends and family for sure. But with all the moving I've done over the years, I am incredibly used to going stretches not being near the people I love the most. It's only three months, after all. It's not like I'm going away forever.