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Warning:  The following is another exercise in Advanced Avoidance Behaviour, as discussed in a previous article (August 21, 2011).   I’m about to hit the trail again after being relatively stable in Kansas for three and a half months.  Apart from short trips to Dallas and Tucson, and even shorter trips to Bartlesville, Oklahoma and Hermann, Missouri, I’ve remained under foot here for far too long. My plans to go to Toronto and Houston were fractured along with my ankle bones, but the time has now come, the bones are healed, and I’m movin’ on…  Just like the song says… (This is not a plug for Toyota but the little girl makes me grin every time I see it.)

Arrivals are such fun, but departures so rotten … As if it weren’t bad enough saying goodbye to loved ones, you have to face the drudgery of packing, which is preceded by sorting and deciding what to take, laundry, and…well, you know what it’s like.  It’s awful. If only I could figure out how to arrive without first departing.  In my mind, it seems a simple matter of transferring the chosen items from the closet to the suitcase. But it never works out like that. I don’t know what the problem is, but anyone who has been around me at this stage knows how hopeless I am in these last hours before leaving.  That’s why I’m here, now, writing.  Because I can’t bring myself to Take The First Step.

I don’t think I’m well-suited to taking frequent short trips.  I couldn’t face this any more often.  Fewer, longer trips means fewer packing traumas.  The proverbial fly in the ointment, of course, is that such trips tend to span more than one season, which adds another layer of complication to the packing.  I know you are thinking that I’m just whining, and why don’t I just stay home and shut up about it, but I have to tell you that I love traveling, so I have to do it.

As far as whining goes, just let me tell you what I have to do at the moment and maybe you’ll be a bit more sympathetic.  On Saturday I leave for Toronto for nine days.  Nine days of frigid cold.  Then I spend one and a half days back in Kansas before heading to Florida to get on a ship bound for the tropics.  So I’m packing to go from colder-than-a-witch’s-tit-Toronto to summer in the southern hemisphere.  Okay.  I get it.  You aren’t feeling sorry for me, are you? I can understand that.  But I plan on taking you with me on this amazing journey–right here on The Meandering Matriarch.  After Toronto I’ll be back on the Silver Whisper, the ship I was on eighteen months ago in the Baltic.  We’re in for some real adventures, I can tell you!  So stay tuned…