D-12: Severe symptoms of Pre-Departitia
12 days to go before I land in Lima. I may go crazy before that time comes. Since when have I been planning this trip? Since when has this torture been going on? I had wanted it to be a happy-go-lucky trip, no plans, not even a return date, not even an idea of WHERE I would return FROM. It seemed like such a luxury to say with a debonair shrug, "Come back? No idea! When I run out of money!" and laugh oh-so-coolly.
But our world no longer allows for such carefree travel. There was a real risk I wouldn't be admitted on the plane in Madrid if I didn't show proof that I would leave the country at a fixed date. There seem to be a few ways of going around this, but I didn't want to saddle myself with extra stress. Leaving alone to an unknown continent for two months is stress enough, no? Delicious stress, but stress nonetheless.
But nothing that will happen to me once there can beat the stress of this past month here, at home.
At 5 AM I am woken by hysterical questions: Which backpack should I buy? How big should it be? Will it be too heavy? Will it be too small? The guy at the shop showed me the nec plus ultra of backpacks but it's €150 more than I want to pay... But maybe it's worth it... Why didn't he even want to show me the one I wanted to buy and that I will buy on Amazon? Is there something fundamentally wrong with it...??? And on and on and on until either I can't take it any more and login on the Net to read about my chosen backpack or whatever is ruining my sleep, or take a dose (last night, a double dose) of Bach flowers (RESCUE!!), or turn the light on and read.
Every single fucking night I find something new to worry about. I am woken up with earthquakes in my heart, gasping for breath.... Did I really buy the plane ticket back home? Did payment go through (next morning, I saw it hadn't)? Did I buy the right ticket? It was too cheap to be true... Must I go to Macchu Pichu? It's so expensive, so full of tourists, won't it be better to go to other sites in the North? Will I really have enough money to do all this? Should I take that Spanish course in Arequipa, even if it means having to stay there an extra week? My bank card still won't work properly... I should open a new bank account somewhere else... What if I have a cavity and it explodes in the high altitude? Should I take an extra pair of dressy shoes? AARRRGGHHH!!!!
As my friend Charlotte said, the worst part of travel is the period before you actually travel...
I saw someone coined a term for this sickness: PRE-DEPARTITIA. The only cure is to leave!