Thursday, September 18, 2008

Packing Up

There's an old traveler's joke about how to pack. Take all the stuff and money you think you need, and put it on your bed. Halve the stuff and double the money, and you'll be set for the trip.

On this couch is almost everything I'll have for the trip. It all fits in the backpack with room to spare.

The last few things I have left are mostly paperwork. I'm waiting for the "special" ballot I ordered from King County so that I can vote in the upcoming general election before I leave. The original plan was to have one of my Agros teammates pack my regular absentee ballot with them so that I could vote in Guatemala and have them bring it back home to drop off. But they're not sending out absentee ballots until the day my team arrives in Guatemala. So I had to change tactics.

Aside from that, I'm figuring things out like travel insurance and how to file my taxes from abroad. That and picking up a few final pieces of gear (like deciding between a thin regular towel or getting one of those "quick-dry travel towels" that feel like felt and purportedly start to stink after too much use, even after washing).

Five days until I leave Seattle. I'm taking a pit stop in Chicago to see friends and family, and then I'm starting for my first international destination: Mexico City. It'll be my first time in Mexico at all. A little embarrassing considering I'm from a neighboring country and have taken Spanish classes starting in kindergarten. Still, better late than never.


  1. Let me know if you wind up in Panama and need advice on places to stay or stuff to do. I've also been around Chile.

    Have FUN!! (and way to vote!)

  2. Awwwwwwwwwwsome, so jealous! Post some pictures so I can show my classes (I teach high school photography now.) I wish you a fantastic journey Joel, soak it all in!