The countdown to takeoff is at a very nauseating 8 days. We are getting vERY close ladies, and the increasing intensity of my flight-missing, penniless-travel anxiety-dreams is, at this stage, laughable.
The last time I provided an update on this here nightmare trip was from the pit of despair in which I resided during visa limbo. I have since climbed almost all the way out, and will hopefully be picking up a gloriously complete passport this coming Wednesday, 5 days before my flight lol #cuttingitfine.
However! Seeing as I've been feeling borderline cocky, I am full steam ahead on pre-trip excitement. A recent jazzy discovery has been that I somehow know someone in Irkutsk which, for reasons that are blindingly obvious, is fabulous and also sunglasses emoji. I already feel incredibly grateful for that.
Specifics aside though, I'm not sure there's actually any part of this journey that I'm not looking forward to. I mean that train is going to be something else. I'm anticipating a whole spectrum of experiences with a hugely diverse bunch of strangers, and I readily embrace what's to come.
I suppose/hope all the pain has been in this pre-production process, which has been all-consuming and disgusting. But it has been important for me to learn about this new kind of travel. I had become very acclimated to flexible and unstructured trips, where changes could be made instantly and with few consequences. It invited a lot more "surprises" (good and bad) but it's sort of what I grew up on.
This, this is like adult travel, and the problem is that I haven't experienced any of it's benefits yet. Nothing has been reciprocated, which makes it difficult for a gal like me to "even see the point" and exhausting to persevere. But I have, and I will see the benefits, and I'm sure this trip will shape how I approach travel in the future. :)