Oh, darlings. I'm getting so excited about so many things, and most of them are Italian in nature. So I'm going to list them, because I do love a list.
1. Yes, I'm going to Italy again. This time I'm going with sister Bethany, who's never been. When Mom died, she left us all a little money, just enough for a special treat of a trip. My two younger sisters went to Ireland together last year, this year it's my turn. So we're off soon, for a Great Adventure. We're both very much alike in that we like to just wander, so we have little planned. We even have about four completely unstructured days between Rome and Venice (tell us what little town between those two you love the most (and why)! Reachable by train, please).
2. Speaking of lists: I LOVE THEM. Sometimes I just open my packing list and stare at it. I've been doing that a lot lately. I'm taking a half-sized suitcase and a small messenger bag on this trip. Both pieces will fit under the seat in front of me. I get almost as excited about packing lightly as I do about our new budget, YNAB. (That surprisingly sexy program has changed our lives, and we've only been using it for two months. Apparently I had no idea how money worked. Oops. Try the free trial, tell me what you think.)
3. My new thing is geocaching. I'm sure you know about this. Pretty much, if I dive deeply into some obsession, I'm about four years late and the bubble of the hobby is about to collapse, but it is SO cool. Basically, you use a GPS to find treasure. Bethany has been doing it for years, and I've gone with her at least once, but it didn't grab me. A friend at work has been doing it, and I was idly listening to her wax rhapsodic, and then I put the two thoughts together: Treasure hunting. In Italy. Immediately, I was online, signing up at Geocaching.com, making lists of the caches we'll hunt for in Rome and Venice. Can you imagine? The fun of that? There are puzzles, people.
When I was a kid, my dad would buy used metal-detectors at yard sales and fix them up. We'd take them to the beach and carefully comb the sand, diving with the shovel at every tiny beep. I don't remember us ever finding anything more than empty metal tins washed ashore by the tide, but there was always that blissful hope that the next beep would be The Big One. The treasure chest of a pirate schooner, just waiting for us to dig up.
Of course, when I was a kid, I was good for about fifteen minutes of searching before I got frustrated and ran away to build sand castles that looked more like wet lumpen apartment buildings than actual castles, and that same letdown could certainly happen with geocaching. It's possible I'll be excited about it twice and then wander away whistling, thinking about a new plot for the next book (the only things I've ever actually stuck with are Lala, knitting, and writing), but you never know. NEW OBSESSION YUM.
4. I have purple hair. I don't know why. I just knew it was important to do.
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