It may look like I all but disappeared since I graduated from college, but I have, in fact, been keeping up on my 101 in 365 promise to blog at least once/week. It’s just been at a different blog. I know, I know, a good blog-keeper would have posted a link to that new blog, but I forgot. Oops!
Just over a week ago I returned from my 6-week European Adventure. I traveled all over, saw things, did things, and had an AMAZING time. The time of my life. I have all sorts of thoughts about the trip itself, but I think that needs to be saved for another post. This one will just be a catch-up.
So when we left off I was fresh out of the car from my final drive from Ithaca. I’d just graduated from Cornell and I had a few days to get my act together before leaving for a few months in Europe. I’ll start from there:
As I said, the trip to Europe was absolutely fantastic. I couldn’t have asked for a better six weeks. I met so many amazing people and learned a lot along the way. I was originally blogging about it from notesfromabroad.net, but after that domain expired, in an effort to streamline (more on that later), I let the domain go and moved the blog to travel.jennvargas.com. It’s all there from start to finish so if you want to know what I’ve been up to since May 24th, that’s your best bet!
I ended up cutting the trip short. I originally gave myself 5 days between getting back from Europe and moving to San Francisco, which, as time went on, became apparent as a completely idiotic idea. Given my state of jet lag and general post-trip disorientation there’s no way I could have managed to pack up my entire life and ship it to California in 5 days. That would have been nuts. So the trip went from just about 9 weeks to 6 weeks. I don’t regret that decision at all.
Since I’ve been home I’ve spent some time just relaxing and enjoying the first real vacation I’ve had since I was 14. No work. No internships. No responsibilities at all, actually. It’s pretty wonderful. Not something I’d like to do permanently, but it’s good to be able to do whatever I want whenever I want and just take it easy without any sort of major deadline looming. I’ve been keeping my neighbor’s pool company (She’s about 75 and doesn’t really use it anymore.) I’ve been catching up with friends from high school and college both in person and online. I’ve been catching up with what’s going on in the world (Traveling really does put you in a current events vacuum. I think it’s the lack of TV and consistent access to information). I’ve been doing the things I should have been doing for the last 8 years.
I’ve also been, almost inadvertently, working on my 101 in 365. I had a bunch of things to cross off once I got back from Europe, but there were also a few side effects that I got to cross off along the way (it turns out that 6 weeks in Europe on a tight budget is an excellent diet plan!). Check out the list! Considering there are still 165 days left in the year I think I’m in pretty good shape!
Mostly, though, I’ve been focusing on the next 3 weeks. I’ve spent hours and hours on craigslist looking for an apartment in San Francisco. My mom and I have been spending a bit of time each day cleaning out the garage and the attic – setting things aside for a garage sale that we’re going to have next week I think. It’s amazing how much crap I’ve accumulated. It doesn’t help that we moved a few days after graduating from HS so none of that stuff was ever sorted through, but then tack on four years of basically using my room at home as a storage closet and you can imagine the amount of clutter. I’m hoping to take the bare minimum with me to CA – I don’t particularly want to start out this next stage of my life already burdened by clutter!
The apartment search is only going OK. There aren’t as many options as there were in the beginning of the summer, and after spending so long focused on every single penny I spent, some of the numbers I’m seeing on craigslist are outright scaring me. When you’ve gotten used to spending no more than 20 Euro a night on a place to sleep, it’s tough to rationalize spending over $2000 for a month! Then there are the other expenses that make me nervous. I’ve dealt with bills and things for the last 4 years at least, but now that there are going to be MORE bills and a regular paycheck and retirement plans and taxes and all of that, it’s a bit overwhelming. Hopefully, though, when I finish reading I Will Teach You To Be Rich , I’ll be less panicky and will have that aspect of my life all sorted out.
So that’s been my summer so far: lots of travel, lots of planning to move, and lots of relaxing. Not bad, if you ask me!