Last week, Wednesday, I drove over to help Maddy vacate her apartment and haul the remainder of her belongings back home. After a lot of hard work and saving, she was in the final stage of preparation for her year-long trip to New Zealand (and beyond).
There was practice packing! And that is it... with the exception of hiking boots that she isn't wearing in these photos, it's all in there... clothing, shoes, toiletries, a towel, tent, sleeping bag, and cooking gear. Believe it or not!
There was detailing of the aforementioned hiking boots, making sure they were free of any and all dirt! Toothpicks were employed. (You can lose your footwear at entry if they're not spic & span.)
There was a weekend in Milwaukee visiting friends, then a fare-the-well gathering at home with friends and family.
Here's her quirky & hilarious first GoPro video from a few nights earlier at home when Ali & the kiddos were over. Maddy's friends & coworkers chipped in and gave her a GoPro HERO Session as a gift! (I can't wait for more!!)
Finally, it was departure day!! Kate, Maddy, Rusty & I all drove down to Chicago on Tuesday morning.
"Travel without limits." (Serendipitous selfie backdrop!)
We had a marvelous farewell lunch at our favorite spot, The Purple Pig*, and then drove out to the airport.
She will be traveling, exploring, discovering, hiking, paddling, and probably working a little bit, too. Maybe on a sheep farm! She will likely travel to other places, as well, such as Australia and Thailand where she has friends. And likely to Europe (Spain!) as she makes her way home next summer. That's getting way ahead of things tho...
For now, it's enough that she's landed. Yesterday, it was 1 p.m. CST Wednesday/6 a.m. NZST Thursday when she arrived in Auckland. A little time travel! The next few days will be spent settling, acclimating, and preparing for... whatever happens next!
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After dropping her off at the airport, we drove back into the city for a visit to the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago.
Kerry James Marshall: Mastry is jaw-dropping. I barely took any photos because... you have to see this work in person. It's only up until Sept. 25th... so hurry!
The Propellor Group exhibition was also fascinating (thru Nov. 13th).
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Whew! That was one long day... I won't be making a habit of day-trips to Chicago!
*We had our favorite Chicken Thigh Kebabs with Fried Smashed Potatoes & Tzatziki along with Smashed Potatoes with Sheep Feta & Oregano, and Bobota "Greek Cornbread" with Feta, Mizithra Cheese & Honey. Then we got adventurous and tried a couple of new dishes: Housemade Gyros & Pita Bread with Pickled Beets & Pickled Turnips, and Squid Stuffed with Proscuitto & Bread Crumbs with Santorini Fava Puree & Charmoula. Oh my goodness, it was all simply delicious!