The next ten days are going to be a WHIRLWIND.
Why are the next ten days going to be a whirlwind, you ask?
I am taking a vacation to rejuvenate from another crazy semester so I can PWN my thesis in July and August. I ended up with a nice tax refund this year, have a nice chunk of vacation pay built up at work and didn’t eat out ever so I could afford this trip. Then I got into a PhD program.
I knew my grandmother would have wanted me to do something fabulous for myself to celebrate. She died last July after a difficult battle with Multiple Myeloma. I spent most of last summer as her care taker. On one of her more difficult days, she told me (among other things) that I needed to live my life and stop waiting around for life to happen. She said I had to start saying No to others and saying Yes to myself. I took her up on that advice. In August 2009 I said No by setting boundaries with a certain family member and a graduate advisor. And this semester I said Yes when I planned a ten-day vacation.* The best part of this vacation is that I will spend every second with new friends and old friends.
May 20 – 23rd: Vegas
I am attending Bloggers in Sin City. Tackle hugs, bar crawls, Cirque du Soleil, Elvis drive thru chapel weddings… with all of these lovely people… Need I say more? I started blogging in January after a long hiatus. I have been so moved by the friendships I’ve made in such a short time. I cannot express how fortunate I am to have people like you in my life. You all make me want to me be a better person.
May 23rd – 27th: Denver/Boulder
I spent New Year’s with Doniree and will see her again in Vegas. Then I get to chill with her more! Also, I CANNOT WAIT to meet Ashley and Cali in person. Must refrain from screaming out loud when I meet them… for… real. I have the most ridiculous girl crushes on them.
May 27th – May 31st: Boston area
I am spending time with some wonderful people in Boston. I will see Elizabeth and her Geek! I adore the idea of relaxing and taking some pictures with her. I hope I can cuddle with those adorable puppies, too! I will hopefully get some work done while I drink coffee with my Trance-loving, law student friend, Taylor. I am looking forward to relaxing with his lovely wife, Anne. Geez I can’t wait to drink his coffee and eat her scrumptious food. Swoon. I will also catch up with some non-blogger friends!
I’ll only be sitting still for a few days in June before I go to DC and Glasgow for work. More summer travel?! Oh yeah.
June 4 – 7: NorVa & DC
Originally I was going to DC this week for work and play. The training I was supposed to attend at the Navy Yard was cancelled, so now I’m just going to play. I’m going to see one of my favorite bands, The National. I’m going to house sit for one of my most favorite couples in the Universe. And I plan to visit with some fabulous DC bloggers. (I hope everyone voted for June 4th for Happy Hour.)
June 13 – 23: Glasgow & Southampton
I have to collect, transcribe, code and analyze video game voice chat communication data from 70 teams by mid-July? I have to defend my thesis by mid-August? I have to have copies of my FINAL thesis in the Dean’s office by August 20th? I have to move on August 1st? I have a full time job? Who freaking cares? I’m going to Scotland to have an affair with a hot Scotsman and to attend a Human Performance at Sea conference. And then we’re going to take a day trip over to Southampton for a conference I am not at liberty to discuss with the public. For free. Because I have the best job in the entire Universe. No, really. I do. There is no job that could be more perfect for me or about which I could be more passionate at this point in my life.
The next five weeks are going to be awesome and busy and fabulous and stressful. A whirlwind.
*I seriously considered canceling this vacation when I was having a mini-major freakout at work Tuesday over everything I have to complete by mid-August. Why did I decide to take a ten day vacation knowing I would be working full time, moving into a new place, having to completely change my budget so I can live on like $5 a month AND collecting thesis data under extreme time pressure so I can defend my thesis in July and graduate in August? Because I’m fracking nuts. I also had no idea this UK trip was going to happen for sure until the last few weeks. I must have anticipated that I would need a vacation around this time. And I do. SO deserve a vacation. I will need to edit and submit my HFES annual conference paper, work on thesis edits, make Power Points for a Human Factors seminar I’m teaching the day after I get back, and pray that our lab assistant is collecting data properly while I’m away.