Yes, I know. You don't have to say it. I haven't been here for a while.
Well, I was away (gallivanting around Western Canada and U.S.), then I had pneumonia for a few weeks, and then (last week) I started a massive Clean Sweep of my apartment. Totally satisfying to get rid of all that unwanted clutter; some stuff I'd kept "just in case" and some because I'd spent money on it but hadn't ever actually use it. I now have a new rule: if I haven't worn it, used it, read it, watched it or whatever in a year, it's gone. You'd be amazed how many things go out the door when you try this!
I’ve also been playing handy-woman and channeling my inner Mike Holmes-on-Homes (who, by the way, I have a secret crush on – big affable guy who knows his way around power tools, how can you go wrong?). Pictures to hang? Done, and impeccably straight. Holes in the bathroom wall to fix? Poly-filla’d like a pro. Wobbly shelves? Solid as a rock now.
There's a reason for the purge and the Ms Fix-It mania. This year isn't just about travel; it's also about figuring out how and where I want to live and what I want to do with my life beyond January 2011. So part of that is getting my home into the kind of shape that I really want it to be -- realizing that it is my "home" and not just somewhere I'm laying my head for a while, and that I'd like it to be somewhere I can gather friends without frantically stuffing all the clutter temporarily into the closet or under the bed. And somewhere I can come home and relax, instead of looking around and thinking about all the stuff I haven't done.
So that long, long list of things to fix or sort or find a home for or get rid of entirely, is getting done in what has been a remarkably productive week. I am very disciplined at work, but rarely so at home; maybe now that I don't have to go to an office, I am more able to channel that energy and productivity into my personal life. Whatever the reason, it feels good to check things off my 'to do' list that have been languishing there for years!
Non-home errands also done -- doctor, dentist, optometrist, banking, all the glamour stuff -- and I have new glasses for the first time in about 10 years. I have done well at staying away from designer shoes, but I indulged a little bit with the frames (thank you, Prada). Aren't they fabulous?
I’ve also got most of the travel prep done – getting the shots, replacing some gear, figuring out what clothes to pack – and I’m definitely heading south first. I'm still mulling over the exact itinerary, so I'll keep you posted. I am going SOMEWHERE south by the end of the month, I am just trying to decide if I can afford to go to Antarctica at the start of my South America trip. I like the idea of hitting every continent this year, so if the budget can swing it, I think I'll do it.
I'll also blog again soon to catch you up on the adventures out west -- stay tuned!