Categories


Authors

Taking stock while on layover in Chicago

We got out the door yesterday and made it to Chicago, where I’m typing this quick update. We’ll soon board a direct flight on Ethiopian Airlines to Addis Ababa - a logistical luxury that we’re all thankful exists. Last night’s red-eye flight worked perfectly for us after a final marathon day of packing and cleaning and saying goodbye to friends.

Travel can be exhausting. And I’ve never hit the road with anything close to this pile of bags. So yesterday’s final stretch was as exhausting as it was exhilarating. 8 checked bags, all within a frog’s hair of the 23 kg international limit (around 50 lbs). Plus two carry-ons, my redonkulusly full camera bag, and backpacks for both Sarah and Maya. Do the math and you’re looking at over 500 pounds of stuff. We thankfully got lots of suggestions of what to bring from ex-pats and pro-traveler friends. Especially considering what’s hard to get in Ethiopia. Shampoo (not for me) and sunscreen (especially important for a pasty Scandinavian like me). Techie gear beyond belief. Then we used extra-large ZipLock bags to compartmentalize everything. Squeeze out the air and really lean into them and they come out looking like sous vide packs of tasty fabrics. The added benefit of the ZipLocks is that Addis is currently in its rainy season. And so perish the thought of our pile of bags languishing on the tarmac in a steady downpour. That would still suck, of course. But at least we’ve got some added protection, by way of an obsessive packing process back home in Seattle.

This is all prelude to the real stuff. Yet we can’t help but do a small pre-season end zone dance after getting underway in organized fashion. There will be many things we miss about Seattle. Which is why I’m going to throw up some rather random pics now.

The distractions Maya faced while trying to get some extra passport photos taken at Bartell’s (from left to right, Garrett, William, Maya, and Lila).

The distractions Maya faced while trying to get some extra passport photos taken at Bartell’s (from left to right, Garrett, William, Maya, and Lila).

Not every run to the North Transfer Station (Seattle’s posh dump) had detritus this interesting to toss. Apologies to Lizzie and Will Clark (of Austin, TX) for getting rid of that cherished heirloom. But it was time to Marie Kondo the shizzle out of that sort of stuff.

Not every run to the North Transfer Station (Seattle’s posh dump) had detritus this interesting to toss. Apologies to Lizzie and Will Clark (of Austin, TX) for getting rid of that cherished heirloom. But it was time to Marie Kondo the shizzle out of that sort of stuff.


The headline “slug” here is - now THAT’s a real Seattle slug.

The headline “slug” here is - now THAT’s a real Seattle slug.

REI store runs allow for the always essential Espresso Vivace takeout orders. This was my final go around for the family and packing help. They will be missed.

REI store runs allow for the always essential Espresso Vivace takeout orders. This was my final go around for the family and packing help. They will be missed.

For anyone who saw my office files arrayed in typical fashion, this is how it now looks for our renters. Wowza, if I do say so myself.

For anyone who saw my office files arrayed in typical fashion, this is how it now looks for our renters. Wowza, if I do say so myself.

Out front of our house. On our way to the airport. Smiles all around.

Out front of our house. On our way to the airport. Smiles all around.

Next stop - Addis. More later. Rock on.

A Call to Prayer...Loudly

Swimming in the details, gulping at what's left to do.