Monday, October 4, 2010

Getting ready for the trip

Today it feels like autumn in the Pacific Northwest. I spent some time in the yard this morning, assessing what pruning and maintenance needs doing. The weather forecast calls for three days of sunshine - a big deal in these parts! - so Friday will be the day I harvest all remaining squash, tomatoes and green beans, pull up the greenery and divide it between the neighbors' chickens and the compost bins, and throw some winter crop seeds into the garden. On my to-do list for the next week or so is a half hour of weeding each day. I actually enjoy weeding from time to time, and this is one of those times. The lady who does our pruning will be over next week to tidy up the yard for the off season.

Our Maine trip is over, photos saved and thank you notes written, and we're now preparing for a trip to Italy. We leave two weeks from today. I just got back from Rick Steves' travel store, two towns over in Edmonds, where we bought two Continental electrical converters, a daypack, a raincoat in a pouch, and a set of packing cubes. I have two lists going: one "packing for Italy" and the other "to do for Italy". The shopping was first; next is making arrangements for a housesitter, having my walking shoes tuned up, and reading the Rick Steves guide to Italy so we have some ideas on what to do in our free time in Orvieto, Assisi, Florence, and Rome. Otherwise, being a timid traveler in places where English is not the native language, I'd be tempted to take a nap or read. I'd like to be a braver explorer on this trip.

The days are getting shorter, and usually at this time of year I turn on my bright light and start taking a homeopathic supplement so I don't get the blues during the winter. For some reason, this year I haven't done that yet. Part of the reason is that we'll be in Italy for 18 days. But part is that I don't have that trapped feeling this year. I wonder how much of my winter blues was because I was sitting in a cubicle at work looking outside at the rain. Or, if the sun did come out, I couldn't go out in it except at lunch, which might not be the sunny part of the day. I'm curious to see how this winter goes for me.

I'm grateful today for those of you who have commented recently that I seem to be on the right retirement track. It's very good to know I'm doing some typical things!




11 comments:

Teresa Evangeline said...

I loved this post, Linda. Thanks for sharing your life with us. Italy sounds soooo nice. Retirement fits you perfectly!

Linda said...

Gracious you're too busy to think, a trip to Italy? That's great. I hope you have a wonderful time. I worried about winter depression when I moved to Oregon but it never happened. I think now that the pressure is off you won't be bothered with that.

Linda Myers said...

I had planned a number of trips. I must have been travel starved. Even now I can tell I'll be doing less of this next year.

DJan said...

How wonderful to be traveling to Italy! I'm sure you've read "Eat Pray Love" and know you will have your fill of great food in Italy. I did, I loved the food in Rome. And you are not likely to have the blues this winter, since you'll be coming home and ready to be laid back for awhile.

Jo said...

Italy...!? Omygoodness...! Can I come with...? Oh, please, please, please do lots of posts from Italy, and tell us all about it.

Oh, you lucky thing...!

Deere Driver said...

PLEASE plan to walk all over Florence EVERY moment you can. It is SO beautiful!

The markets and galleries are enough to walk through and enjoy. One is busy. The other tranquil.

Take the bus recommended as below and see the city from the hills while enjoying some local food.

I did all this with my daughter as a thirteen year old (we had three days), and it is a wonderful memory.

http://www.independent.co.uk/travel/europe/48-hours-in-florence-534670.html

Linda Myers said...

Thanks for the Florence recommendation. We are walkers and I will check out the URL. We'll have four days in Florence with only part of it taken up with group activities.

Deb Shucka said...

It's so cool that you have Italy to look forward to, and a winter of freedom to get outside. Last winter was my first of freedom and I had much less problem with our long gray and damp days than I've ever had. Happy packing. Happy weeding - I love being outside on these sunny fall days, too.

Linda said...

It is so good to read your posts. I am looking forward in the not-too-distant future to retirement. AND I get what you wrote about the Pacific Northwest blues...It's so darn dark and dreary in the winter here....Some days I miss the freezing weather in Canada where, even though it was cold, at least the sun was shining!

CherylK said...

I hope you have a fabulous trip. I know what you mean about the dreary weather in Washington. It's just a beautiful place and I love spending time there but I've got to have sun. Winter in Minnesota is brutal but we do have sunshine most of the time.

Deere Driver said...

Linda,

There are links for as many days as you want. Its a great way to filter what is must see and what you have time for.

My cousin in Munich calls it the most beautiful place in the world and she's traveled a bit.

I long to go back.