Save the planet

I’ve been reading a lot of articles lately on my news feed about the environment.  From the NYT, “what to wear to be kind to the planet?” Another article from Outside Magazine about how fleece gets washed in the washing machine and fibers get loose, entering the water system and polluting our oceans. It made me very sad. From SFist, SF is ordering so much from Amazon Prime, Blue Apron, and other online retailers that provide free shipping that they are raising the recycling pick up rates 14% to handle the increase in shipping materials (cardboard, plastic, styrofoam, etc.). 
In addition to my already complicated ethical and economical habits, I have decided that I do not want to contribute to harming the planet with my buying habits. Starting in August, I am not going to buy anything new for the next year except essentials, like underwear and socks. I am starting in August because that will be the beginning of the school semester and I can keep track of the one year mark easily. This may be difficult but I am pretty sure I can do it. Want to join me in my pledge for less consumerism, less capitalism, and a better environment?  

In gratitude

Everything worked out for a reason and there was likely no reason to panic about nursing school but in retrospect it seemed very stressful during the application period. As I close this chapter of life, and I move on to the next, I have evolved to the next version of me, Liane 4.0 if you will.  There was 1. growing up in NYC, then college, 2. Corporate life at McGraw-Hill and publishing <NYC, Philadelphia>, 3. Semi-retirement, traveling the world and post semi-retirement <SF>, 4. Nursing school <North Carolina>. This will be my 5th cross country move. I am grateful for all of you who have been on these different journeys with me. I recognize it is never too late to keep growing, try something new and begin again.  
Photos: On Tuesday, friends at archery, the last photo is from 80 yards away. 

My friend, Don R.

I received an email from my friend, Don, (who said it was ok to share).  He is fighting a battle against cancer.  Don and I know each other from my former life in publishing, but we started to communicate more frequently when I began my life after publishing.  Don is one of my biggest supporters, always cheering me on from a far.

Don, I know you read my blog, so I want you to know, I am cheering for you, sending you strength and love to both you and June.  I am sending something in the mail soon, be on the look out in the upcoming weeks.

Below is a photo of us (Don, on the far right).  When I biked across the U.S. the first time, he drove 2+ hours from Cincinnati, Ohio, (also picking up another publishing friend, Carl L. along the way), to visit me as we biked through Kentucky.  Kentucky was the closest point to Ohio on our route.  Lisa B. (another publishing friend) was kind of enough to host us for dinner, shelter my team, and open her home to the team the next year. I vaguely remember she kicked out her kids for the night (they slept over at friends’ homes) so a few teammates and I could have a warm home and beds for the night.  I also remember Lisa, helped me with some mail (receiving and shipping) on my behalf.

In the photo, I am wearing a t-shirt from WCU (West Chester University) given to me from the bookstore manager from one of the schools I covered as a sales rep to remember them by, before I left for my bike trip.  This photo was a lovely summer night and it reminds me of the gratitude I have for everyone who has supported me and continues to support me through all my adventures.  Don, I hope you know how grateful I am for your support and friendship.  Your most recent Christmas card sat on my desk for these many months, until just recently when I sold the desk to prepare for my move to North Carolina.

The other photo is of Lisa B. who woke up early the next morning and cheered us on as we biked by her on route to our next destination.


Life on Craigslist

I picked up 30+ free moving boxes yesterday from a guy named Frank who posted them. He recently moved into a new home with his wife. I told them I was moving to North Carolina, for nursing school @ Duke. His reply was Duke’s a good school. This is the same response from everyone I meet. They tell me Duke’s a good school. I like that reputation and feel confident in my decision to go there. Sometimes, though the response is, oh, Duke, they are my team! Duke basketball is big and I’m excited too, more from anthropology perspective to learn about its culture. I am looking forward to watching things like marching bands, and basketball games in a stadium that fits 8,000 seated fans, and 12,000 standing fans.

The boxes were used only once for this move, and by professional movers. The boxes were labeled, vases, ski jackets and pillows. The couple mostly moved kitchenware. I appreciated picking up the boxes but they are all small, 16”x12”x12”. My down puffy jacket takes up one whole box. I have packed about 20 small boxes: camping gear, helmets (climbing, skiing, bike), bicycle pump/accessories, winter sports (ski jacket, pants, gloves, thermals, hats), mountaineering specific clothing (like gaiters, crampons, climbing harness, etc.), and sleeping bags. I packed one box of linens and towels, another of school supplies/books, hangers, trekking backpacks and regular jackets and shoes. I really don’t think I need an apartment just a garage or large closet/gear room.

I also posted a few things on Craigslist for free, left over from the previous tenant or I received for free: over the toilet glass stand, plastic shoe rack and outdoor patio furniture. Each of these free posts, I received over 10+ replies. I deleted all the messages from people who did not follow the directions of my ad and gave the items to those who could follow the directions. My note included, please reply with your phone number, date/time you would like to pick up the item.

Last night, I asked the girl who picked up my outdoor furniture if she wanted other things for free. I proceeded to give her bags of tea, opened bottles of aloe vera, sunblock, mosquito spray, wooded trivets, old ski goggles were the glue/adhesive had worn off from the padding, tennis balls (I don’t play tennis) and a stainless steel cocktail shaker. I was happy those items found a home since goodwill does not accept perishables. Now I have to give away my flower vases, lasagna glass pans, and other fragile items. I think I’ll ship my other prohibited items via Fed Ex through work, but I need an address to ship to.

The definition of an appliance is a device that is used for a specific task. I think the small electric kettle, hairdryer and hand held clothing steamer are defined as appliances, which are prohibited on Amtrak. Or maybe they only mean large appliances like a washing machine and I can still ship my small items. Other items not permitted: archery equipment, power tools, silverware, fragile items, artwork, liquids, perishables and ice axes (sharp objects). I don’t know how they would know if any of those items are in my boxes because the boxes do not go through a x-ray machine. However, I understand archery equipment is considered a weapon, ice axes and fragile items could break and hurt someone so I’ll likely ship those through work. I’m glad I had a month’s head start to start this moving process rationally. Otherwise, if I was short on time, I’d frantically be giving everything away.

Paperwork welcoming you to Duke

Sharing a photo: playing peekaboo.

I have been to the Student Health Center, 4 times in the last two weeks to be cleared for my immunization paperwork. The immunization paperwork requires birth immunization records. If you do not have your birth immunization records with the Dr.’s official stamp, you need to order titers with quantitative lab reports to prove you have the immunity. Luckily I had my paperwork, but additional paperwork was required for a Hep B titer ($16). I had to get a new TB test because TB tests are annual depending on the communities you work with. Fortunately this TB request was only one series and not the two series that I have needed in the past for my previous volunteer paperwork. The flu shot also is required within the program start date when it becomes available. 
I paid ($130) to have a background screening to ensure I do not have a criminal or sex offender record in the last ten years within the last three States that I have lived. Friday, I have to pass a drug screening. I have to renew my American Heart Association CPR certification, even though it has not expired and I have other CPR certs good for two years. They require a valid AHA certification for the duration of  program ($60). All forms must be completed by June 15. 
Additionally, I am getting blood lab work done and my eyes checked as well. The blood lab work is not for the program directly, but my last 4 visits to the school health center they said my blood pressure was so high, it was indicative of pre hyper tension. I could only equate the high blood pressure with stress, rather than medication, lifestyle, or even hereditary issues. I am surprised the stress I have been feeling over this application period is resulting in physiological indicators. When I said I felt stressed over the last several posts, and I was unable to overcome it in my normal ways of exercise, outdoor activity, friends, and sleep. My heart was actually squishing tighter. 
The move is going ok. I am now at phase 2 of the reviewing stuff – Marie Kondo method – do you love this stuff? I really do like my flower vases, but do I need to ship them? Will they break along the way? It’s apparently harder to part with some things than others.  

Purge away

I gave away 8 pairs of shoes, some of which I have not worn in over 5 years (work flats, sandal wedges, old sneakers, old hiking shoes, water shoes…). I gave away knee pads and wrist guards from over a decade ago when I used to snowboard. I found a blue tooth device, from the days when I used to sit in the car and have conference calls.  What is hiding in your closet?

Generally, I feel prideful about keeping my possessions in check and it surprises me to find these outliers. I have given away 8 paper shopping bags of stuff. I am slightly horrified that I had so many things to give away.

My friend argues that I should sell my two zero degree sleeping bags (one is down, the other is synthetic – serving different functions). She asked if I would use them in the next few years and if they are worth the cost of shipping and keeping. Yes, I love my sleeping bags, and they will never go bad. Technology will change, newer sleeping bags will become lighter, but I’m happy with them so I think they should move. I also don’t think I will ever return to SF, to visit yes, but unlikely to live here in the foreseeable future. I want to bring with me all that I will ever use, which is why I am keeping my ice axe too.

I am also surprised at how quickly all my furniture sold. I only have a few remaining items I will use over the next month (bed, and sofa), then those too will go. I enjoy the refresh, and opportunity to begin again. The only good thing about moving is to examine one’s possessions, and be honest, if they fit your current lifestyle. I read somewhere, when moving, be ruthless with the purge.

Farewell San Francisco

I hope they have archery at Duke. Instead of attending a 3 year tuition free masters program in San Francisco, I have opted for the 1.5 year accelerated bachelor’s program for $80,000. If hired after graduation, Duke Medical does offer a $25,000 loan forgiveness program. I think I am choosing the school with the highest quality of education that will offer me opportunities to grow and stretch.

Farewell San Francisco, I depart at the end of June. Hello, Durham, North Carolina. You can find me there for the next three years.