So here I am.
Sitting in a coffee house in the middle of America, avoiding the ice and snow that surrounds every building; caking the streets like fondant on the world's most depressing confection. Huddled in heavy winds, our cigarettes last as long as the candles on a 10-year-old's birthday cookie.
Yet unlike the bleak and blistering winters of Nebraska outside, the weather within me is warm and content with anticipation that I will soon be leaving this place, and within reach is my new life; albeit, a life I am confident will be stressful and lonely, challenging and foreign; it surely won't be a life without plenty of rewards.
I've been to Zambia once before.
It awed me with it's vast landscapes and scenic drives, it thrilled me with it's natural wonders and humbled me with it's extremely likable population of hospitable people. But out of a five-month, ten-country trip, it was hardly the country that I thought I would return to first. Over three years ago I was there for a short while, and in less than three weeks I will return to live, work and help a country that touched me so simply in exchange for unforgettable memories and the value of knowing I am a part of a bigger and more global picture.
It's all a little bittersweet though.
Sitting with my friends, having a beer and listening to music, playing music on a stage or going out for a night on the town, I'm realizing that I'm going to be without a lot of the things that make my life ... well, my life right now.
I'm realizing that I'm not only preparing for an adventure, I'm also preparing for a new way of living; a humbler version of myself, possibly. A modest human experience. An opportunity to grow and appreciate what it means to be alive.
I'm not sure what direction this blog will take when I actually start to make regular posts, but I'm hoping to share stories of the people I meet and the places that I visit. I want to share the stories of accomplishments in myself (assuming I experience any), and above all, just make sure all of my family and friends know that I'm alive and well :)
Looking forward to the future. And I will miss and be thinking of home often.
I already feel that.