July was a very busy month for me. I had one thing almost every weekend and one really busy week. Also, my prepping for my trip kicked into high gear. I was able to enjoy family while getting some of my personal needs taken care of. I used July as a way to prep my travel planning because I wanted to focus August on some final issues and looking for remote jobs.
July 4 Weekend
The July 4th was an unfortunate combination of good and bad. The good was that I was able to hang out with one of my best friends Krissy, the bad was that the stress of traveling abroad hit me like a freight truck, which means stomach aches for a whole week.
Let’s do the good first. I ended up having a four-day weekend (thank you work) and was able to really enjoy that. It was a good combination of having a few plans, but also some relaxation. On the 3rd, I went and spent the whole day with one of my best friends. She lives about a half an hour away and we did what we usually do in the summer, pool! God I love a lazy river. We then had dinner on a rooftop and since Ames had their fireworks on the 3rd we got to enjoy that. I also was able to spend some time with my parents at their place for some good home cooking.
Now the bad. I learned during law school that when I get stressed I either get bad head aches or stomach problems. This time it was stomach problems. The whole 4th weekend and following week all of my insides felt twisted and uncomfortable. But don’t worry, my stress levels came down and my body has started to calm down.
80/35 Music Festival
I got to attend my first ever 80/35 Music Festival, even though it was celebrating its 10 year anniversary and I have lived here all my life. Better late than never. 80/35 is a music festival that takes place every July and is dedicated to indie and folk music and brings in national, regional, and local bands. It’s a great opportunity to support local bands and the music scene in Des Moines. You can read my entire article about my experience here.
For a couple of the weekends in July I was able to enjoy some family time. My parents were watching my nephew for a week while my brother and sister-in-law were on vacation in New York City. I had to work that week, but I know my parents greatly enjoyed the week and were extremely tired by the end of the week. I did get to spend some time with my nephew. My mom and I took him mini golfing and then for some wings. That boy is 8 going on 18, but I love him.
So I as I mentioned before, July was a big month for moving things along for my trip around the world. First and foremost, my ticket is bought!!!! That’s right, shit just got real! There isn’t really any turning back unless I want to eat all of that money. Tip for budget travelers, use multiple websites to look for flights. I used Kiwi, Momondo, and Skyscanner to help me find the best flight. However, I am not looking forward to that 13-hour flight from Chicago to Doha, but that’s the one that worked.
I have also slowly started buying items I will need over there, including a collapsable water bottle, adapter, camera accessories for my phone, little bags to store stuff, etc. Amazon and I have become great friends with my habitual shopping at least 4x a week. But when you are a planner for the most part, it helps to get some things figured out before hand. I’m all about letting the road take you once there, but some things need to be figured out first. But this month has for sure made things all the more real.