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Showing posts from May, 2019

78 Days

You are making progress. Slowly. So slowly. Birth certificates with apostilles. Marriage certificate with an apostille. Copies of passports. Appointments with the Austrian consulate. Emails. Phone calls.

And home school. You’re reading Homer’s Odyssey with the gingerbread offspring, and you feel a kinship with such a traveler. But you haven’t even reached the part where Odysseus makes his entrance. You’re still in Book IV, and you’re supposed to be starting Shakespeare in June. Oof. Maybe by the time you’re finished, you’ll also be ready to begin traveling.

You did make quinoa for dinner tonight, and that’s using up some of your pantry items. That’s about as good as it gets right now. Small victories, one grain of quinoa at a time.

80 Days

Jules Verne insisted that one could circumnavigate the globe in 80 days. The youngest gingerbread offspring must have picked up on this vibe today, because he asked if you could go to Azerbaijan. When you responded that perhaps you could just start with Austria, he smiled. And then asked if you could fly to Iraq.

Austria first, please?

“Maybe Uruk?” he asked.

This is what comes of reading The Tale of Gilgamesh for homeschooling.

Yesterday when you returned home from family camp, the obvious quiet coming from the chicken coop concerned you. Sure enough, when you went to check the chickens, they were all victims of a local criminal—probably of the fox variety—and it makes you sad, even if you hadn’t been to visit them in a while. The backyard feels empty now.

You went to the police station today—not to report the fox, but to get a letter stating that you have no criminal record so you can have an official piece of American bureaucracy to show to the Austrian government for their officia…

81 Days

You count. There are 81 days until you leave for Vienna. 81 days to finalize schooling for the younger gingerbread offspring. 81 days to find a renter for the house. 81 days to clean out the attic, basement, and office. 81 days to eat all the random pantry items (e.g., sesame seeds, canned green chiles, red lentils, sushi rice, lots of table salt). 81 days to figure out what is essential to bring (favorite kitchen knife, garlic press, earplugs? Are there earplugs in Austria?), what can be purchased there (exercise ball? Instant Pot? Earplugs?), and what you can live without (an oven, since the apartment that will become home doesn’t have one, but it does have a rooftop terrace, so.). 81 days to prepare the older gingerbread offspring for college (send him with earplugs).

The square root of 81 is 9, and the square root of 9 is 3, which is the number of Johnsons who will be living in Vienna. Which is also probably how time will pass. 81 days will suddenly turn into nine days, which wil…