I now pronounce you… girl and backpack

They say before you get married (I have to invoke the imperial ‘they’ because I’ve never been married) that a person can suffer from a malady known as cold feet. Even though this is wedding and marriage is something you’ve wished for, planned and saved for months, maybe years for, you are suddenly paralyzed with fear. Maybe you’re not doing the right thing, maybe this is all a big mistake, and you’re not ready. 

This is how I felt during the first 5 minutes of my 36-hour of travel to Thailand. Except that as a solo traveler, there is no one there to push you onwards. This is the first of many incidents where you are tested on your strength. So it is on your own, sitting in 37A, about to leave your hometown that you must remind yourself of why you are doing this. 
I have long been in love with travel–we’ve been in a relationship for quite some time. As hard as this love affair can be, it would be harder to be without it. Traveling allows you to evolve, to grow into a person that you’d never imagine you’d be. You have to remember what lies at the end of that runway–a beautiful, amazing new chapter in your life. 
So dig an extra pair of socks from your pack and kiss the bride!

Getting a visa — Myanmar

As a seasoned traveler, you cultivate a belief that your passport is more valuable than gold. You keep your passport strapped to your body, under your clothes, watching it warp from the layers of sweat. My first trip outside the States, I had my passport stolen, and there’s no worse feeling when you loose your passport and the consulate is closed (as a newbie, ignorant to the levels of gov’t bureacracy, I felt hurt and isolated. I HAVEN’T FORGOTTEN, BARCELONA!). 

So imagine my feelings today when I relinquished my precious passport, no less cherished now that I’m on home soil, to the United States Postal Service in the hopes of obtaining a Burmese (Myanmarian?) visa. Obtaining a 28-day, single entry, non-extendable visa from the embassy in Washington DC requires a relatively standard application, a work history report, 2 oddly-sized photos, and travel itinerary (and 20 bucks, but that was the easy part). Since I’m going to Myanmar at the end of my trip (June), I had to wait to apply to my visa since it’s only good 3 months from issuance. As I’m less than 30 days out from leaving (AH!), I’m going to have residual nervous and negativity creeping into my brain until it’s safe in my money belt. If it gets lost… No, can’t let that sort of negativity in!
… but what about all the stamps I have?!
Fingers crossed!