Lessons from Day One

It’s been a long journey. Here’s a quickety-quick recap:

1) A valiant band of fantastico women never fails to save my ass. Exhibit A: College friend Claire ran into me at the coffee shop and gave the perfect, serendipitous pep talk about how, right before her round-the-world trip last year, she wondered: WHY AM I DOING THIS. I was similarly wigging out. Exhibit B: My sister Lisa helped pack my entire (entire) bedroom for the subletter while I packed my suitcase. Sister bonding. Exhibit C: Becca showed up to drive me to the airport with a bevy of drugstore purchases PLUS a camera she’d bought at Target THAT MORNING. PLUS a breakfast burrito.

2) Letting go is easy sometimes. In the car to the airport I immediately spilled a bunch of breakfast-burrito juice down my only sweatshirt and experienced a bizarre lack of caring about the situation.

3) Airline seating sometimes rocks. At the gate I spotted a woman who seemed to be a kindred spirit. For one, we were the same (tall) height. For another, we had pretty much the same glasses on. And she wore cute accessories, like a twisty, rust-metal ring that I was already coveting. But she looked tired. I was tired. We didn’t speak. Then, on the plane, I was shoving my messenger bag under the seat in front of me with the toe of my sneaker when I looked up to see…. her. She was sitting next to me. So she (Kendra) and I exchanged 5-minute autobiographies that morphed into 5-hour autobiographies, then watched movies and napped and ate bi bim bop from plastic containers with real silverware and little tubes of hot red pepper paste.

4) The airport in Seoul, Korea? Is awesome. Free wifi, pretty and clean, free luggage carts, good bookstore… and when you need to buy lady products from behind the counter at the pharmacy, you can just point.

5) It IS possible to get a ton of work done once you check into a hotel after a 20-hour journey because your body doesn’t realize that it’s 2am. Feels so afternoon-y!

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