Leaving on a jet plane

It’s been a busy few weeks. I’m not even sure what went before, but this week has been centered around family. My uncle passed away late last week; my mom and cousins flew up from FL and other cousins drove in from New York. Some of us haven’t seen each other in at least three years. It’s always bittersweet to get together on such a sad occasion. Laughter mixed with tears as we shared memories of Uncle Lou. We promised to see each other more often.

Bill and I are leaving early Saturday morning for our two-week trip to South Africa. We’ll spend a day of sight-seeing in Johannesburg, six days in Zulu NyalaΒ on a photo safari and five days in Cape Town. Included in the safari are two excursions a day on the game reserve, we don’t have any firm plans beyond that. We know what we’d like to see, plan on seeing it all, but didn’t want to lock ourselves into a rigid schedule. I’ll probably be offline the two weeks I’m away.

I bought a car, picked it up Monday. I haven’t owned a brand new car since I was in my twenties, this one had 7 miles on it when I pulled out of the dealer’s lot. My preference has been pre-owned but I got a good deal so I went with it. I’m still fooling around with the positioning of the seat and steering wheel but it’s a heck of a nice ride compared to the 2002 with 161,000 miles I’dΒ been driving.

The feedback I received on the essay I submitted about learning of my ex-husband’s death was positive. I edited it quite a bit and re-submitted it; I’m waiting to hear back. I’m grateful for the input whether they choose to publish my piece or not. It was scary sending off something I’d written that was so personal. It was a little easier sending out the revision but I had the feeling it wasn’t any good, same as the first time. Practice for, hopefully, many more submissions.

I’ll be back in a couple of weeks. And, I’m betting I’ll post a few photos from our vacation.

photo credit: freedigitalphotos.net

39 replies

  1. I’m sorry to hear about your uncle, Geralyn. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.
    I was going to email you to ask about your trip. I thought it was coming up soon. I hope you and Bill have a wonderful trip. I can’t wait to see your photos! Be safe, my friend.

  2. Funeral-family ‘reunions’ are always bittersweet. My condolences to you and your family on your recent loss.

    South Africa sounds like it will be a ‘treat for your feet’ to be!
    Stay safe.

    • Thanks, Laura. ‘They’ say family get together for funerals and weddings. Sadly, it’s been more funerals than weddings lately. There was talk of a family reunion, hopefully it happens.

  3. Oh wow, two big things so close to each other. I’m sorry to hear about your uncle Geralyn, and I hope it doesn’t damper your vacation. Wow! South Africa. I’m sure you and Bill will have a wonderful time. And I think it’s wise to leave time open in your schedule too. That way you have more freedom. When my mom and I went to Buenos Aires, we didn’t do any tours. We did it all on our own (mind you, I did live there for three months so I knew where to go and what to do). Anyhow, have a wonderful trip. Looking forward to the photos.

    • Thank you, Staci. My uncle’s passing was sudden; I’m grateful I was here for my aunt and cousins. The last few trips we’ve taken have been with tours. This is a little of both. I’m looking forward to exploring Cape Town on our own. We have some good suggestions from people who have been but no set plan. Stories to follow! πŸ™‚

      • Oh I’m so sorry about your uncle. So then it wasn’t expected.
        I think a little of both is perfect. You get an organized tour with someone who knows what they’re talking about and it’s a lot easier to get around. Plus you have the freedom to go as you will during the times you’re not on a tour. Looking forward to the pics.

  4. So sorry for your loss, Geralyn. Bittersweet is a very good word to describe family get-togethers on such occasions. I wish you a wonderful trip to South Africa. I’m sure you’ll have many photos to share on your return. Congrats on your new car. πŸ™‚ xx

    • Thanks, Sylvia. I think you must know exactly how it feels to get together with family to share tears and laughs. Can’t wait for our trip. I’m sure you’ll be familiar with some of the sights we see. πŸ™‚

    • Isn’t it too bad, Kate? We talked about a family reunion and I really hope it happens. It would be great to see everyone because we wanted to not because someone has passed. Hope you’re doing okay without Jake. Have a great weekend.

  5. Very sorry to read about your loss Geralyn. I know the trip is going to be a once-in-a-lifetime – hope you have a safe and fantastic time. Congrats on your essay submission – will be going over to read it. Take care ~

  6. So sorry to hear about your uncle. You’re right–get-togethers like that are bittersweet. It’s nice to see family we haven’t seen for a while, but it’s unfortunate it can’t be under happier circumstances.

    Have a wonderful trip. Sounds like it will be the vacation of a lifetime!

  7. I’m sorry about your uncle. Enjoy the relatives, and have a wonderful trip. A six-day photo safari plus all the other sightseeing sound like great fun.

  8. Sorry for your loss. It is always hard to lose a loved one. We went to SA a couple years ago, beautiful country! Cape Town is quite nice, I found the people to be friendly and the countryside (and food) is excellent. Safari should be amazing as well. Enjoy!

  9. Ah, John Denver helped you out with the title of your post. πŸ™‚ It’s perfect because of the song’s melancholic tune (leaving) which matches your sadness of the passing of your uncle. But on the joyful side, you connected with family – always positive – and are now exploring a new world. Exciting! Can’t wait for your return, and to hear your new stories and see photos.

  10. My condolences on your Uncle’s death, Geralyn.
    Also, congrats on the essay, the new car, and the trip. S. Africa is an outstanding place and I look forward to hearing about the trip.

  11. Safe travels. I look forward to hearing about your adventures. Sometimes the loss of those we love punctuates the importance of not waiting to go after our dreams and desires. You will carry your uncle with you in your heart.

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