The Hard Stuff…

Just finished my first leg of many in my travel journey, visiting family in Ireland! Heading off to Scotland for a mix of fun, catchup and whiskey of course! Wanted to share a few things that hit me hard in the last few weeks that were more difficult than predicted in the planning and excitement of my trip around the world.

-WHAT THE HELL DO YOU PACK?! Sure, you can read every blog under the sun about what to pack, do’s/don’ts and TRUST ME, I read many of them. Lists were made, Google Sheets created, but in the end, it was CHAOS. Piles of clothes, first aid items, shoes, toiletries and OH THE ELECTRONICS! strewn all over my parent’s living room floor. In the long run, I know I have too many pairs of shoes (runners, Toms, Sanuk Sandals, dressy sandals and shower sandals), way too many bathing suits (6? maybe, I lost count! Do sports bras count?) and more chargers for electronics than I care to note here.
Advice on this subject : Use ziplock bags. Other than that, I’m still an amateur at best.

-DO NOT TRY TO MOVE/RELOCATE SIMULTANEOUSLY! My belongings are everywhere! Many people ask, “What’s next after the trip?” The answer: WHO KNOWS! That’s a future Ciara problem; she’s smart and she’ll figure it out. However, she may never find half of her belongings because as previously mentioned, CHAOS. You can lease out your apt, sell your car, couchsurf, or become a personal live-in chef (my preferred method) to save up for your trip, but please learn from my mistake – keep it simple for yourself.  75% of my anxiety was from not knowing what box/home/state/country my things were in.
Advice on this subject : Do not add more stress before your trip.

-LEAVING LOVED ONES *tears* This saddness was inevitable. I hated saying goodbye to my nephew, my family, my friends. I did not think I would cry at a preschool, in a kitchen, in a bar, or in the car nearly as often as I actually did. However, in the time leading up to my departure, I HAD AN ABSOLUTE BLAST making new memories, celebrating old ones and basking in how fortunate I am for my adventure ahead and the support of the people in my life.
Advice on this subject : Make an incredible list of fun things to do and tackle it with everything you’ve got.  A cigar and scotch with your best friends and family was definitely on my list.  Also, just be thankful. All the time.

-CLOSING THE BAG! Kneel on it, shake it, squeeze it, recruit others to help. This is going to be an ongoing hardship for me – I can just feel it. It likely comes from overpacking and I am sure I’ll lessen my load along the way, but for now, it’s a true pain in my ass.
Advice on this subject : Don’t overpack. Way easier said than done.

Just a few of my thoughts as I sit in the Dublin airport. The last two weeks have been about prioritizing time with my family so I am overdue for updates – but trust that in between Scotch Whisky tastings I’ll find a few moments to share recent adventures. Time seems to fly by and this upcoming week is PACKED with adventures and friends. I sit here so unbelievably grateful and excited… and thankful for my Priority Pass at airport lounges!

Sláinte! – Ciara

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