Fieldset
The beginning

Well, it finally hit me. I've been patting myself on the back for the last week or two about how I've been taking everything in stride, organizing my affairs, and getting ready for the trip ahead.

Well, it finally hit me. I've been patting myself on the back for the last week or two about how I've been taking everything in stride, organizing my affairs, and getting ready for the trip ahead. Then I woke up this morning at 4:30am with my heart pounding and my mouth dry as sandpaper with a giant dog crowding me off the bed. I think he sensed something was different and he decided to celebrate the moment with a cloud of impressively potent flatulence. My eyes opened wide, he licked me on the forehead, and the day was off to a good start.

Now, after dosing on caffeine, I'm feeling pretty perky. I need to go for a run just to get rid of some of the nervous energy but I'm going to have to wait for the three eggs, three pieces of toast, and chocolate-covered sour cream donut to move a little distance from my stomach before I make that effort. In the meantime I'm finishing my packing. My bag is about three pounds over the weight limit and I'm questioning whether I really need 14 pairs of underwear but I can't find much else that I don't want to take with me. It's time to make some tough choices.

So the plan is to fly out of Fort Smith at 5pm today. I'll fly to Atlanta and then leave for Paris at 9pm. I'll lose six hours and arrive there at about 11:15am, go through customs, and then catch a train to Brussels. I've got pretty clear instructions on how to get from the train station to the hotel via subway. French is the language in both France and Belgium but I'm counting on meeting some people who speak enough English to help me along my way when I inevitably get lost or turned around. Just in case I've been practicing speaking English with a French accent.

Before leaving I've been vacillating between getting a haircut and not but I think I've made the decision by default since there's no time now. Unfortunately that realization came at about the same time that I realized I really, really need a haircut. I'm tempted to pull out the old Flow-bee but that has never been a good choice in the past and I'm pretty sure history can repeat itself so I'm avoiding that temptation.

I'm not sure what the situation is going to be with internet access in Sierra Leone but I'll put in updates when I can and if I have something to say, not like today when I actually have nothing to say but don't want to face the task of eliminating stuff from my stuffed suitcase.

So I guess that's all for now. Bon voyage! Or, as you say in English with a mangled French accent, Goot Twip.