If you know me, you know that I'm a very chill person. You also know that there are times when I become an anxious weirdo. Case in point: I am certainly going to Senegal, Mali and France this summer for field work on my master's degree. Now, my first reaction is, "Yes. Finally. I am going to travel parts of the world and do what I've always wanted to do. I'm going to try EVERYTHING and anything."
The second reaction is this. All of this:
Will I go psycho from anti-malaria medication?
How will I keep in contact with Nathan?
How will I plug in my laptop?
How many shots will I have to get?
Will they hurt?
Will I get malaria?
Will I get yellow fever?
Mosquitos love me. Will I be covered in bites?
Will my stomach get messed up?
Will I be able to handle such a long plane ride?
What if I eat the wrong thing?
What if I brush my teeth with the water and get sick?
What if I get a worm in my leg?
How will I handle being apart from Nathan for seven weeks when the longest we've been apart in eight years was one week?
What if I'm wearing a purse and all of my stuff gets stolen?
What if I swim in fresh water and get a weird bug?
What kind of bugs are crawling around over there?
Are they huge?
Will THEY bite me?
What if people think I'm dumb because I speak broken French?
What if people think I'm dumb because I'm a happy-go-lucky personality?
Will my dogs forget about me?
How will I budget money for 7 weeks?
And on and on and on. Just call me a half Filipina version of Larry David:
Whatever the anxieties, I'm going to stick to this mantra: Try everything and anything. I've always made these elaborate plans to travel. Plans written on napkins, loose paper, my brain, and my dreams. However, there was always something stopping me, whether it was either money or time or lack of resources. None of those things are an issue now (thank you Fulbright). I've got an amazing husband, family, and colleagues. I'm going to buck up and do this. So this is it. I'm spending Summer 2010 working and living in Bamako, Mali; Dakar, Senegal; and visiting Paris to debrief. Only 18 weeks until departure.