Okay, listen. I had all intentions of keeping up with my blog with my full-time job, but it’s difficult! Not only am I busy from 8 to 6:30 (that’s including my commute), but I have a social life again after being gone from the city for almost two years. Your girl is straight-up tired. AND here’s the (somewhat) sad truth. My days run into each other, my weeks run into each other, and my months run into each other. Not much changes day-to-day so it would have been a veritable copy/paste from one month’s recap to the next. So instead of being late with my April and May recaps where I also might have had to address that I turned 33, I present you with my SPRING recap, or rather some highlights from a very busy season, that started with a weekend with my family for Easter:
How do you measure, measure a year? 2017 was the year I spent time in 13 different countries and 11 different states. I traveled to Europe three times. I set foot on my fifth continent. I revisited London, Indianapolis, Ireland, and Portugal. I reunited with friends from college in Prague and Dublin and old coworkers in London, Chicago, and Dubrovnik. I traveled for 10 days in Cape Town with someone I met in Mandalay and for 12 days in Croatia with someone I met in Dublin. A twelfth of my year was spent dog-sitting, both in Chicago and Jersey City. I added Shenandoah National Park to my list of U.S. National Parks.
He waved a gun at the entire bus while yelling, “Shut up, everybody!” Then he grinned and said, “That’s how you say ‘hello’ in Chicago.” The gun was fake, as was his “gangster” accent, but he stayed in character for the whole bus ride. He was “Baby Face Bambino,” the bus driver was “Shoulders”, and I was there for “Chicago’s Original Gangster Tour” with Untouchable Tours.
Dog-sitting in Chicago for most of May felt like a no-brainer to me. For the last few months, I’ve had a flexible, freelance, remote job working on TripSavvy.com, which just launched on May 15. I could either work from the various libraries in and around my hometown, or I could work while staying for free in the city of Chicago. I have a few friends in the city and had plenty I wanted to see, do, and eat that I’d missed from my first long weekend there. The fact that I’m obsessed with puppies was another bonus.