I am staring at a long, nasty list of things I need to do before moving to Pakistan (which could happen in as little as two weeks, I found out today).

Clean out my closet.
Buy hand sanitizer.
Give back that book of yours that I read or that skirt I borrowed.
Set up my Power of Attorney.
Get shots for tetanus, polio, typhoid fever, and hepatitis B.

[Side note about tetanus. Does everyone know you are supposed to have a tetanus booster every ten years, even if you’re not moving to the Indian sub-continent? Am I the only one clueless about this? You should have seen my doctor’s face when she found out I hadn’t had a tetanus shot since the late ’80s. I guess it’s a good thing I’m going to Pakistan, so I don’t die stepping on a rusty nail right here in the good old U. S. of A.

Back to the list.]

Use up all the root vegetables from our farm’s winter share.
Catch up on Battlestar Galactica.
Go to the dentist.
Get a haircut.
Eat lots of raw vegetables and salads while I still can.
Buy everything I can’t get in Pakistan so that I can ship it to Pakistan with me.

[Sidenote about buying everything I can’t get in Pakistan and shipping it to Pakistan with me. I know this screams bad idea. And yet, I really want to do it. Moving someplace for a year, especially a foreign place where you’re pretty sure they’re not going to have that sunscreen you like or whole wheat pasta or Dagoba dark chocolate in roseberry flavor, has given me a sort of crazed, hoarding mentality, as if I am preparing for a year in a metal bunker or an interplanetary hatch while I travel at lightspeed to find life on other planets.

Back to the list.]

Draft a will. (standard procedure, nothing to be alarmed about)
Invite you all to my going-away party.
Buy pants that cover my scandalous calves and cardigans that cover my bum.
Cancel my gym membership.
And, most heinous of all:

Finally decide what to do with those two Oreck air purifiers I bought in an impulsive attempt at health many years ago that have since sat, unplugged and collecting dust, under the couch in the back room. Turns out it’s better just to open the windows and also that I am a sucker for infomercials.

[Side note about infomercials: I saw someone on the Boston subway recently carrying The Magic Bullet in a box (it’s a blender! it’s a juicer! it’s the ultimate party machine!) and got so excited I almost broke my rule about starting conversations on the subway with strangers. The Magic Bullet infomercial, for those of you who don’t know, is perhaps the finest example of the genre. It is slick, well-produced, and narrated by a friendly Australian guy and a pert little blonde. It also has a colorful retinue of supporting actors that sit around the show kitchen and ooh and ahh at the amazing food and drinks produced by The Magic Bullet. This includes Lazy Balding Guy who hates broccoli but….not when it’s hidden in a delicious smoothie! And Old Smoking Lady whose glasses hang on the edge of her nose and who seems pretty awesomely drunk, even though the show starts at breakfast. She doesn’t believe you can make an omelette in 30 seconds until…she sees it with her own eyes! I love the Magic Bullet infomercial. It is so good in every way that I have actually chosen to watch it over real television. This happened on a JetBlue flight to California in which I passed up all those channels of movies and sports and sitcoms on the back of my seat to watch The Bullet make pesto and salsa and pina coladas. The tv isn’t even on right now, and I’m still thinking about it. Even as I stand face-to-face with the failure of my last infomercial product (grandfatherly Mr. Oreck sold me but good), about to move to a country that I’m sure will not be plug-compatible with The Bullet, I still want it. I want to buy a device that makes blueberry muffins that are actually blue. Yes, I want to add “Buy The Magic Bullet” to my Pakistan to-do list because I’m quite sure I can’t live without it for a whole year! It must be quite clear now that preparing to move to the other side of the world has made me crazy.]

[Sidenote about sidenotes. This post was supposed to be a list of all the things I wanted to do in Boston before I left. The good things. Like go to the North End for a slice at Pizzeria Regina and have a bowl of my favorite Tom Kha soup at 9 Tastes in Harvard Square. But, like I said, I’ve gone totally crazy. I can’t even keep my mind on a to-do list. So I apologize for the sidenotes. They’re not an homage to David Foster Wallace, just evidence of about-to-move madness. I promise to shape up once I finish my list, pack up my stuff, and arrive in Islamabad. Especially after that first blueberry muffin.]

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