I meant to post this a week ago after my first week in India. But time gets away from you here (so does good wifi).
Leaving Yosemite was hard. It didn't really feel like I was quitting and leaving for good. It felt like I was going on a weekend vacation to SoCal. But once I started packing it was hard. I didn't cry openly saying bye to everyone. But I cried standing at tunnel view because I realized nothing would be the same ever again, even if I came back to the valley to work. The era of our group was coming to an end and that made me want to sob.
There is part of me clinging to the memories that I've made here. Packing made me realize that things will be different. I won't have the view of North Dome from my window, there won't be knocking on our door every night from friends coming to relax after work. But there is another part of me ready to make new memories. I knew that I didn't want to be the employee recreation team leader forever but I will miss all of the friends I've made through that job. My last days there were hard because I was trying to prepare for things that wouldn't be my business in a few days. When it came to my last day, my brain was saying maybe I can come back after the trip and work there. That is probably just me comfort zone speaking. That voice telling me to stay put and stay in a familiar place. But that's not how you grow.
"The only thing more unthinkable than leaving was staying; the only thing more impossible than staying was leaving.” -Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love
Who wants life to stay the same? If life was exactly the same in 3 years as it is now, who would be happy? Not me. I know that I have so many dreams and goals and in order to make them happen we have to leave places behind, we have to leave people behind. Yosemite has helped me learn a lot about myself but I've outgrown it and I've felt it for months. But I know that the friendships I have made will always be there. We will meet up again and we'll all have new adventures to talk about over the Glen Levit instead of just work issues.
We are traveling completely carry on. No checked luggage, only a 15lb bag that I can carry on my back. This means our luggage won't get lost on a plane somewhere, we don't have to wait for it to come off of planes or buses, and we will be less susceptible to theft. Cam and I also want to see how minimal we can go and still get by.
I thought it would be harder. But today we packed up a box to send back home with some presents but mostly clothing items that we shouldn't have packed in the first place. A good quarter of what is shown in the picture below was packed up and sent home because I way over packed.
The first flight was just under 14 hours. Based on the reviews for China Eastern I thought the flight was going to be horrible. But my expectations were way exceeded. They had touch screen monitors on every seat back and free movies, music, tv shows, games, and wifi. The leg room was fine for economy class. The flight hugged the coast of Alaska and Russia so my inner fears of crashing into the middle of the ocean were calmed.
When we got to China it was so confusing to find our way to the transfer flights. You go through security again and a metal detector looking thing with two people wearing face masks. Apparently it detects if you have a fever (what do they do to you if you set it off?!). So we finally make it through and get settled waiting for the next flight.
The second flight was 8 hours and I tried to sleep most of the way through. But omg. I was nervous about landing in Delhi. Everything I read was telling me that I was going to start being targeted for scams immediately after getting off the plane. That I shouldn't leave Cam's side because as a woman I'm going to be groped or worse.
This wasn't the case at all. We got in line for our visas to get checked. We got through no problem with our e-visas and headed out. We had to go through customs (although the green channel hardly seem to be monitored at all?) and we were on our way out. The hotel we booked for our first night had a car pick up waiting for us. It was a bit pricy seeing that it was rp. 500 (we later had longer taxi rides than this one for under rp. 200). But since this was our first time in the country and we were nervous and tired we gladly accepted. I hardly slept. I think it was part nerves and part excitement. I was nervous for the next day because we had to get to our next hotel which was near Connaught Place, right in the middle of the city.
But we are in India!!!!!!!