I am close to the start of another great adventure in my life, and I am feeling mostly angst. (Added to that feeling is the irritation at not knowing a good adjective for angst – anxious isn’t the same.) I’m on the verge of leaving, except for those little things holding me back.

Money – I have enough, I think, to take this trip. The trip is contingent on being able to sell my car, which hasn’t sold and which I’m re-posting on Craigslist two to three times a day, in hopes of it selling this week. I can certainly afford a ticket down to San Jose, which is the biggest issue. I suppose the problem is that I don’t know what I’ll do when I get there, so I can’t exactly budget for it. And, of course, I don’t WANT to know what I’ll do when I get there – that’s part and parcel of the reason for the trip.

I want to see where my journey takes me. I want to see how I like Costa Rica, and then move on to some other country in the area – maybe in Central America, maybe South America. My cousin Daisy lives in Colombia, so we’ll almost certainly end up there at some point. I’d like to see at least five countries in Latin America, and pick up some Spanish. I’d like to live as the locals live, but also get some tourism in – I’d like to paddle around in some lake in the mountains, or possibly raft down the Amazon. Or maybe we’ll explore some jungle or other. If we can find someone local to take us around on these things in their daily life, rather than an organized tour, that would be ideal, but I’d rather do a tour than pass those areas by without exploring them at all.

And, as the money begins to run out, I’d like to have found a place where I can imagine settling for a while. I don’t know in what capacity; I may have found some charitable organization to which I’d like to devote myself for a time, or I might have met some interesting people with whom I’d like to spend a few weeks or months or years. I’d be fine with teaching in some capacity again, but then I’d love to start some new project – writing non-fiction comes to mind.

The trip ahead of me is exciting, but right now I am flip-flopping between anticipation and frustration. I can’t leave yet – there’s always something holding me back. First I thought I couldn’t afford it, but finances be damned, I’ll not let that stop me. Then I was waiting for my sister Ellen to get her credit card in the mail – she and I are travelling* together, and she wants a credit card for emergencies. Now her card has arrived, but my physiotherapist who is helping me recover from my broken wrist wants me to stay for at least another two weeks, maybe four, until my wrist is better healed.

*Every computer program on earth assures me that travelling is spelled with one l, not two. I remain unconvinced.

This year has been a challenge for me – I have spent more time unemployed than working, been injured and sick more than once, moved several times, and dreamt about this trip through most of that. This trip has been almost a dozen years in the making – Ellen and I thought it up while we were hitchhiking on the East Coast, and the time has never been right for it. This time, we’re not letting life stop us from doing what is important to us – taking this trip. I have said since the beginning that I wanted to be off before winter weather set in. I’ve gotten rid of almost all my cold-weather clothing – I’m wearing mostly the same outfit day after day, with my bag packed full of summer wear. I’ve gotten rid of almost everything I own, to commit myself to taking it.

And the physiotherapist says wait, just a little longer. I’m sure it’s the right thing to do, but it’s driving me insane to do it.

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