We passed the 2 week mark yesterday. 14 more days here in the USA. I’m still having trouble believing it. I was telling my wife the other day how I’ve been getting emotional lately about the dumbest stuff. Even though I’ve always professed how far away from my family I wanted to live, it’s going to be hard to not be around. At least the Dominican is only 4 hours by plane, unlike other parts of the world where I could be 20 hours by plane away.
We’ve gotten a lot of stuff out of the way over the past week. Lots of stuff we’ll need has been bought. I was a bit horrified that we blew through like $5,000 in as many days, but then my wife reminded me that this was about a year’s worth of spending bought in one fell swoop. Okay. I guess that makes me feel a little better.
Things we’ve bought (because everything is just a bit more expensive in the D.R.):
-new tires for the car
-clothes for everyone
-UPSs for the electronics (computers/TV) – these condition the line as well as provide power in an outage… a good thing for when the voltage/amperage fluctuates a lot
-toys for christmas and birthday gifts
-lots of shampoo/conditioner
-crates to ship the dogs
There’s more, I’m sure. Like the auto insurance policy for in the D.R., and the brush guard and auxiliary lights for the truck.
There is still a lot to be done, however. Pack out is 9 days from today. The car gets picked up a week from today. The dogs go to the kennel on 8/3 before we fly to Puerto Rico for a couple of days. We need to say bye to a bunch of people before we leave. Our son’s been talking a lot about the “big, big airplane” we’re going to take and the “new one house” we’re moving to. It’s too bad we’ve got to spend some time in temporary housing before ours is ready, but there are worse things… we could have to stay longer in Oakwood.
The dog-shipping situation continues to be a nightmare, with the newest hurdle being what is meant by “USDA-certified vet.” Our transportation company is insisting that it’s the countersignature from the USDA-APHIS office in Richmond, VA (which involves a whole new set of office visits, fees, overnighted materials, etc.), but all anecdotal evidence and what I’ve seen just says that the vet needs to stamp the health certificates with his USDA-issued seal. I’m so frustrated with this whole process at this point. It seems like everyone I speak with has a different set of information, and no one is communicating with one another.
On a brighter note, we may have a housekeeper lined up. I just need to speak with her today to see if we get on… since I’m going to be spending the majority of the time with her. For $14 a day, she’ll clean, do laundry, and even walk the dogs once a day. It’s a nice luxury we get when we’re in developing countries: affordable house help. I’m hoping she works out… she seems great, and the dog-walking thing will really help.
That’s about all… off to spend the day on the phone trying to figure out about 20 different things. Ciao!