Today is the day! I officially get to leave Ridgecrest, and start my trek back to God's Country. I am so excited :)
The Silver Bullet got a bath on Wednesday and a good vacuuming on the inside. I have checked my fluids and the air in my tires in preparation for our cross-country road trip. I have plans to detail it when I get back to Arkansas, but I figured I'd give Aspen and Koda a chance to drool and shed all over it one more time before I put forth all that effort...
A few of my coworkers were super nice and took me out to dinner last night to say goodbye :)
I have everything packed, and most of it loaded in the car. The only thing I have left to do is to clean my bathroom (bedroom has already been cleaned!) so that my roommate doesn't have to deal with my mess when I leave, load the last few things in the car (like my computer, toiletry bags, a bag of groceries, etc...things I didn't want to get too hot by being in the heat all day), pack up my ice chest, load up the 4-legged children, and stop for some ice, fuel and bottled water on my way out of town. Hallelujah!
Only one part about leaving California make it kinda bittersweet. I have really enjoyed getting to spend so much time with my grandpa while I've been out here. He lives near Palm Springs, which is about 3 hours from Ridgecrest, and I spent most weekends driving down to visit him. I went and visted him one last time this past weekend, and when I left, he told me to be careful, drive safe, keep in touch...all that stuff that grandpas say...and then he said, "I'll see you in eight months! I've already got it figured up!" He's right. In about 8 more months, I will be back in Ridgecrest for Internship: The Sequel (hopefully...if my extension doesn't get granted, I have to graduate in May and move back out here completely in 8 more months...). He dang near made me tear up when he said that...but thankfully I was able to make it to the car before that happened. I have a pretty darn cool Grandpa, and I am really going to miss those weekends with him. I know he has enjoyed me coming down to visit too, which made it that much harder to leave. I'm glad that it will only be 8 more months before I get to hang out with him again.
I am leaving work early today, and heading to Flagstaff for the night. Then I will get up tomorrow morning and drive to Amarillo to stop for the night. Then I am Claremore bound Saturday morning! I am really looking forward to getting my life back. I'm going to start it off with going to meet my best friend from college's brand new baby boy and watching my little niece play soccer on Saturday. Depending on what time I get into Claremore and how long Brooke's game lasts, I may try to make it to Fayetteville Saturday night in time for the Hogs game against Troy. Otherwise, I may just stay the night in Claremore and spend some extra time with the fam. Sunday is my soccer team's first game of the season, so I'm going to try to make it back for that...hopefully I won't be completely worthless after being in the car for 3 days straight! Then Monday it is back to work to continue working on my PhD! Tuesday is when my phone meeting is scheduled with my scholarship office to see about getting my award extended so I can stay in Fayetteville for an extra year. Wish me luck :)
I have a lot of work to do for my research at school. I also have a house that is in need of a good cleaning, and I'm going to clean both vehicles inside and out...those things will probably be my priority for the first solid week I'm back. I just want to feel like I am at home again :) One of my roommates is moving out soon, and I have another one moving in shortly after I return, so I'm sure I'll be helping with that as well :) Really, I just have a big long list of things I'm going to do when I get back to God's Country. I can't wait to get started :)