Airplanes and Emails and Sheep, Oh My!

If you haven’t seen me in person for a few days, here’s the look that’s been pretty much plastered on my face this whole time:

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This expression, but hopefully less … red. Excuse the photo quality.

Today I took the final step of booking my flights, so it’s official and I can finally announce it: I’m WWOOFing in Scotland this spring!

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Big Transit News

I’ve made two big changes to Becca in Transit today. First, I bought the domain BeccainTransit.com! No one has to remember anymore whether I’m at WordPress or Blogger or another site. Now my URL is just me!

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Second, I have a big travel announcement in the wings, and thanks to my tax return this year, I can officially afford it. But because it will leave me with approximately twenty cents when I get back, I’ve added a Small Donate Button button to the sidebar.

If you read my blog, I will never expect a cent, a shilling, a yuan, or a zloty from you. My words are free. But if you enjoy reading about my transitions or want to support a starving artist or are just feeling generous, I’ll accept donations to keep me moving. This might be the difference between returning to a part-time job at Jo-Ann Fabric here at home, or affording to take a TEFL class this summer so I can teach abroad. I’m providing the button, but feel no pressure. I know a lot of us bloggers out there are just getting by. 🙂

Anyway, thanks for reading! If it weren’t for folks liking and commenting and following my blog, I wouldn’t still be writing. Stay tuned for details about my next big adventure!

Packing Toiletries

Something you should probably all know about me now before we move on any further in this blogger-reader relationship is that I hate packing.

I mean really hate it.

If I could go around the world with nothing but a passport in my pocket, I would, but I also like to have things like clothes and a camera on hand. Enter: lists. Specifically, my packing list, which I created in a .txt file in high school and have been adding to ever since, so now it’s a fairly comprehensive look at what I’ll need for any given journey. Thanks to that list, I can achieve results like this:

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Look! The zippers all close!

But I still hate packing … especially toiletries.

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Field Trip to Asia

Back when I lived in Madison, I drove past several Asian grocery stores on my way home from work each day, and thanks to friends in the know, I got hooked on certain products from their mysterious and inviting shelves. I thought I’d be fine when I moved back to PA, but no. Inevitably, I began feeling the need for sweet red bean paste, citron tea, and glutinous rice flour, none of which are available in my little town.

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Enter Penn State University. Thanks to the international student body, the town of State College can sustain several Asian grocery stores, and on Monday, I took a field trip to stock up on supplies.

At first I thought I wanted to go by myself, and then I started to picture my grandma in these stores and invited her to come along. At 90 years old, my grandma loves grocery shopping, and she was thrilled to join me and my mom for an all-new grocery store experience.

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Travel Recollections: Kids on a Plane

Today’s post is an early draft of a travel recollection I’m still wrapping my brain around a year and a half later. Forgive disorganization or rambling; just think of it as seeing into a writer’s brain a little bit before usual.


 

When you see an annoying kid waiting for your flight, never inwardly pity the person who’ll be stuck next to him at 36,000 feet. Don’t tempt fate. You’re just asking for it. You know it’ll just end up being yourself.

When I found my seat on the Friday-morning flight back to Madison and saw it was the aisle companion to the kid’s window seat, and when I saw that his dad sat in the row ahead of us with no intention of moving closer to his son, I buckled my seatbelt with more force than was necessary. I often like to be left alone in flight, but today of all days, I truly needed the solitude. It would figure I get stuck beside the annoying kid. Continue reading

I’m back!

Guys, Merry Christmas to ME! After a month of being computerless, I finally bit the bullet and bought a new laptop. I don’t want to get into which kind I got because I don’t want to be all product-placement about it, but I love it, and it’s fast, and I’m keeping it far away from water.

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Disaster

Ok, so it’s not really a disaster, but it is a disappointment. My laptop got watered, and it’s unfixable for less than $750. (Watered? you ask. It was under a hanging basket that overflowed.)

It’s hard for me to write on a phone, so there’s been a lull in my posts. Also, I’m not sure what I’ll replace my laptop with. Any ideas? Must be quick and must love travel (kind of like my choice in men…). I’d prefer to spend less than $500, since I’m living on a limited budget.

Back Home in Baltimore

It’s been a week since we said goodbye to the Wookiee, and I’ve decided to write this post as though it never happened. It’s a part of my life, and I’m still sad, but it’s not a part of the weekend I spent in Baltimore, which is what I’m writing about.


Image from MingPresents. Click photo to see her blog

That weekend, I spent several nights with my BFF. We went to a fruit tree festival in Druid Hill Park, where the kids bobbed for apples in a downpour, and we took the Light Rail to the Guster concert at Ram’s Head. We put together a puzzle and watched Master Chef, and I played with their kiddos every evening. (Meaning, they bilaterally threw blankets over my head for a two-fold attack. Aunthood was so much easier when there was only one! I’ll never win against Team Sibling.) We went to a mutual friends’ house—friends I hadn’t seen in years—and reconnected like only a day or two had passed.

Being in Baltimore was like going home.

Which is weird, really, because it never felt like home when I lived there.

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Longish Absence

I spent last weekend in Baltimore, and I’m working on a post about that visit, but it will be a little bit. Sadly, the Wookiee’s yearlong fight with kidney disease ended this morning after a turn for the worse. He was my 16th birthday gift, and he’s the one who, after my first trip to Germany and spending a month away from home, welcomed me back by sitting on my head. A companion for half my life, he was a pet, a guard cat, a mascot, and an icon.

I’ll try to write my Baltimore post, but no guarantees when I’ll publish. Perhaps some would say he was just a cat, but all I can think of now are the times when he was so much more.