Prepare For Takeoff

This is my room right now.

How did it get this way? Let’s start from the beginning.

I’m leaving China at the beginning of October. I’m booking it from Shanghai to Rome, Italy, where I’ll meet up with a friend of mine and together we’ll train it to Florence. I’ve gotten fairly well settled into my life here in Qingdao and have the requisite piles of crap to show for it. This mess is the result of heaving everything up out of my drawers, off my shelves and out from under the bed and throwing it all together so I could pick through what was:

1) Necessary (send back home)
2) Not necessary (leave here)
3) Packable

I went to one of the local big box superstores and they gave me some boxes – fo’ free – which made me feel like such a savvy recycler. I carefully spent the next two days packing up everything I needed and editing out all the crap I didn’t – mostly magazines, magazines and more magazines. I’m pretty sure I consumed a quarter of the country’s paper products while staying here (so much for savvy recycling…)

I carefully taped everything up and after finally realizing that the “foreigner friendly” postal service I’d been thinking of using was going to charge me my first-adopted child, hauled my stuff down to China Post. So much easier said than done – I think the two boxes weighed together like, eighty pounds. I had to move one down the street and then run back to the other to bring it to the curbside so I could catch a taxi. Once I finally got into the post office (much heaving accomplished) I plonked my boxes down on the counter and was promptly informed that I had to unpack them and switch boxes, because customs wouldn’t let me reuse boxes with markings on the sides. F@#$W#@.

I freaked out for a little bit, mostly upset at how much time I’d wasted, then caved in and packed the new “official” boxes. It took five minutes and wasn’t actually much of a hassle – who knew? I told myself afterwards that I wouldn’t have been able to get my things down to the post office without having them packed together somehow, really it was just all the taping that was for naught (again…so much for the savvy recycling). Of course, at the time…I was not thinking such happy thoughts.

Now my room will stay like this until the end I guess, as I sort through what’s left and begin to pack up The Suitcase. Most of the magazines will end up at the local foreign bookstore (I think) and I would just like to say here that I willingly parted with not only three (3) copies of US Vogue, but two (2!) copies of French Vogue. Lifting boxes might be hard, but that’s what I call strength.



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