T minus 30 and counting…ouch!

Who’da thought it?  You can pull a hamstring just standing there.

Okay, to be fair (to myself) I was at the beach about thigh deep in the ocean when a wave rolled in and caught me unaware.  Rather than just falling over and letting it take me in, I tried to stand up through it and the result was…well, you know the punchline.  If it had been a really bad pull I’d probably still be there, trying to climb back up the “steep” beach, but I managed to struggle back to the paiotte.  Since then I’ve been mostly trying to stay off my feet and take painkillers.  It’s getting better.  Now the trick is not to do anything stupid until it’s fully healed.

T-30 days.  Inside a month (because August and July are both 31 day months).  Sooner than that, T-18 days to packout, which means I need to get my house organized for being moved.  I need to get the office organized for my departure and jump through the dozens of paperwork hoops that the government is so good at!  I actually have a good jump on most of those.  The house, not so much, although I’ve started.

The Christmas tree, which has been up since right after Thanksgiving 2009, is down.  I’ve started sorting through the clothes, tossing the socks with holes and shirts with worn cuffs.  I’ve started making the Foreign Service three part list – what goes into HHE, what goes into UAB, what goes into my luggage.  I’m finding things I’d thought I’d lost, but just buried.

I’m realizing I’m starting to have lasts.  For example, there’s a Thai restaurant I really like.  But they close for a month in August, so I’ve been there for the last time.  I’ve probably ordered stuff for delivery through the pouch (although not received everything) for the last time.  I’ve paid my last satellite TV and Internet bills.  Many more lasts to come in the next 30 days.

I’m happy to watch others tread the path I have these past few years.  Alexis has arrived to be a new Public Diplomacy officer here in Cotonou.  Theresa is taking in information from a fire hose as a new FSO in A-100 class (Intro to the Foreign Service).  And, while I was waiting for the gang to gather for happy hour yesterday afternoon, one of the folks who took the Foreign Service Officers’ Test the most recent (and last) time I gave it, has just learned she had passed and was moving on to the next step.


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