As of August 1, 2012 I am officially unemployed. (A state of being which has also been referred to as, depending on the speaker’s mood, “fun-employed,” and “none-mployed.”) This means a whole host of things to me–like, “don’t fall down a flight of stairs because you don’t have health insurance any more,”–and it means a lot particularly in light of the fact that I have held a job of some sort–at least part time or seasonal–since I was 15 years old. (I started at the full-time job I just left five days after I graduated from college.) But mostly what being unemployed now means is that the Countdown to Iceland has officially begun. Time to get real.
This month (or roughly 25 days–22 now) of “getting real,” and getting ready to move to Iceland, was hypothetically going to be one delightful, lazy spree of sleeping in, going out, spending more time at the gym (got to up my swimming skills before I get to all those lovely geothermally heated pools), gallivanting around art galleries and favorite bars and unseen New York neighborhoods, and doing all those little home-bound crafts and hobbies (sewing!) that I’ve managed to set aside and aside and aside in the last few crazed months.
Oh, and packing.
And saying goodbye to everyone. (Which, I’ve found, is a lot like some sort of hilarious death march. Saying goodbye to someone over The Last Drink or The Last Brunch until For-ev-er–or at least nine months from now–carries this honestly awful heaviness and finality and everything you do and say in the space of that encounter has to be Totally Meaningful. I have to keep reminding myself–and my friends, and my family–that I am “not dead,” just moving to Iceland for awhile, and will be back in less time than any of us think.)
And storing all our books. All 1,200+ of them.
And selling our extra furniture, duplicate books and DVDs, and anything else we think we might be able to get a little money for and won’t miss so much when we come back.
And booking plane tickets.
And getting a replacement computer.
And letting in realtors and prospective tenants so that my landlord, who lives in Greece every summer, will not miss out on even one possible day of rent-getting when we move out.
And watching our number on the housing waitlist creep slowly, ever-so-slowly up the chain (we’re Number 30! we’re number 30!).
And figuring out what e-readers I’ll be able to use in Iceland. (Not the Nook, which I own, FYI.)
And getting an international driver’s license.
And buying a year’s supply of contacts because who-knows-how-that’s-done-in-Iceland and I’m not sure if Icelandic state health insurance (which we’ll be covered under after six months in the country–whoot!) will cover optometrist appointments.
And visiting Mark’s family. (I had my AZ farewell in July.)
And getting a cargo quote for shipping belongings to Reykjavik via Icelandair.
And figuring out which books get to go in my own personal book box. (This will take at least a week, if not more.)
And eating everything we have in the kitchen so as not to waste any food. (Use the whole buffalo!)
And etc. etc. etc.
25 22 days of free time doesn’t seem like a lot to get ourselves together and move out of the country. But it will be fine.
Because it has to be.