It's almost like being told, "You have one week left to live - go."  
   Except, it's not really. 
Because I hopefully won't be dying anytime soon and my trip isn't going to send me hurtling into the great unknown for the rest of eternity.  But, I mean, it's pretty close.  So, obviously, I'm going to construct a hypothetical "Bucket List" for my journey and this is what I have thus far: 
  1. Create a survival-pack. I have already travled to the far and distant land of Walmart to pack my carry-on backpack full of Pop-Tarts, Cheez-Its, and Scooby-Doo fruit snacks; items necessary for my survival.  So, if I'm feeling even slightly nostalgic or questioning my own sanity on the plane-ride out, I can just munch down on some Cheez-Its and forget all my woes. Forget clothing, water, and first-aid - fruit snacks are where it's at. 
  2. Eat out at Rainforest Cafe.  One might assume that because it's labor day weekend and all that I might want to fill myself up to the gills with good ol' American food: hamburgs, french fries, and hot dawgs.  Or perhaps I would crave one last trip through the McDonald's drive-thru. But to be quite honest with you, I would rather spend my last meal with a bunch of animatronic apes than order another McDouble off the dollar menu.  
  3. Only spend time with people I want to spend time with.  If I only have five days left, why not spend it with the people I love?  It's amazing how differently people act when they know their time is running short: they start saying things to you they've always wanted to say, doing things with you they've always wanted to do as if they feel like if they don't get it all out now, they'll never get it out.  And it seems to be the same vise-versa. 
  4. Try to stay in the moment. I want to want to be here as much as I want to go.  If I leave mentally before I'm supposed to I'll miss out on what's right in front me: the way my mother smiles and laughs with her retainer in before she goes to bed, the sound my dog, Aslan, makes whenever he lets his giant body collapse on the ground after a long walk, how my brother can scream for hours at the computer screen when he's playing StarCraft2, how my dad clicks his nose while he watches golf from the couch.  This is how I want to remember them, even if everything changes while I'm gone .  And I have to keep reminding myself - this is what I'm leaving behind. 

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