I am one week away from departing to Iceland. This will be the first leg of my Year of Deviation.

I've done so much planning over the last month getting last minute things together for my trip. My family has been awesome. They've given me tons of support during this process. They've put a roof over my head and fed me home cooked meals for the last month. They've helped me make preparations all despite their sadness that I'm leaving for a whole year. I am truly lucky to have them.

Here's a list of everything I've been up to ('cause creating lists is the thing to do these days, amiright?):

  • Visiting with and saying goodbye to friends and family
  • Training for hiking and carrying my backpack around
  • Packing and repacking my bag to test space and weight
  • Ordering last minute supplies/gear
  • Communicating with relatives, friends, colleagues, potential hosts, and house-sits overseas
  • Getting immunizations and vaccinations
  • Setting up all my credit card and bank accounts for foreign travel
  • Finding out about cell phone/data plans in other countries
  • Gathering and making copies of travel documents (e.g., my passport)
  • Creating a mail filing system for my family to manage my snail mail
  • Designing and ordering business cards to hand off to people I meet
  • Preparing my devices (loading music/video/programs/apps/etc. to phone & tablet)
  • Researching sites to see and things to do in the countries I visit
  • Blogging and establishing a web presence
  • Browsing future award seats on one-way flights to various countries
  • Purchasing advance ground transportation tickets
  • Applying for working holiday visa in NZ (I was approved!)
  • Taking in my surroundings by exploring upstate NY
  • Appreciating my temporary comfort
  • and so much more!

This week will be about last minute errands, finalizing accommodations, and solidifying itineraries for Iceland and Germany.

I don't think the reality of this trip has truly set in yet, and I don't know when it will. When I hug my family goodbye at the airport? When I am gazing across the Atlantic from the airplane window? When I'm standing next to a hot spring near Reyjavik? Maybe I'll surprise myself and just keep chugging along at the pace I've been going since I moved out of my apartment in NYC to upstate NY last month. If that's true, this year will go by incredibly fast. Either way, the trip I've wanted to go on my entire life, the trip I've been planning for nearly 2 years, is almost here. A thousand different thoughts and emotions are surging through my body right now. When people ask me how I'm feeling, I seem to lack the words to describe it.

People keep saying to me, "You're going to have an amazing time." I wonder what comes to mind for people when they say "an amazing time?" It's hard to fathom what "amazing" will consist of in the next year. We'll just have to wait and see!