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Katie Cochrane's Blog

The Final Countdown   (published in Madagascar)

October 13, 2016 by   Comments(5)

So here I sit, trying not to panic, stress, or worry about my upcoming trip of a lifetime, which all who know me, know that worrying, is my specialty, so I am failing miserably at trying to stay calm and focus solely on packing. So, instead of packing at this time, I am writing my first blog, to share my feelings and stress with all of you.
On tonight’s agenda, I am going through all of my clothes and making sure I have enough clothing that covers my chest, shoulders and knees, as professionals in Madagascar, do not show those areas. So, I have many maxi skirts, and capri pants to last me the two weeks I am there in the classroom! As for shirts, I am a shop-a-holic, so one would think, that I would have enough shirts that cover my shoulders, or chest. Wrong! My goodness, I never realized how many of my shirts show my shoulders or are v neck, so show a bit more than I feel is appropriate, so, thank goodness for Old Navy and their incredible sales. So, now, I have lots of skirts, shirts, a few dresses, I have a few pairs of jeans, some shorts that I can wear, when I am not in the classroom, and some tank tops. I have my bathing suit to swim in the Indian Ocean, a rain jacket, two pairs of sneakers, two pairs of sandals, and all my toiletry items.
Now that I have thought of all my clothes, time to think about other items that are necessary for this trip. I have bought chlorine tablets for when I am not with my host family, to put in my water to ensure I am not drinking water that has not been boiled or filtered appropriately. I have rehydration powder, that is full of calcium and potassium, and you just put it in your water to help ensure my body stays as hydrated as possible. I have a bug net, for myself to sleep under to keep the mosquitos away as, Madagascar is a high risk zone for Malaria, and well, I am a worrier, and would like to be over prepared and well covered. I have all of my necessary medications all set and packed, I have pictures of Maine, friends and family to show the children, I have a letter that my friend and her class wrote to the children of Madagascar. I also have flashcards, and workbook items to assist teaching English as a Second Language.
Now that I have the necessities packed, I also needed to ensure I packed things for myself to ensure I will be able to enjoy this trip more. I bought a universal adapter, to charge my phone, and I-pad. Where I have a US Cellular plan, US Cellular does not have anywhere in Madagascar that I can use my phone, so I bought an international sim card, called OneSim Plus, so, I was given a different phone number, and it will allow me to call and text as needed. I will also be right next to an internet café, where I will be able to go and write my daily blog and post a quick update to friends and family regarding my adventures. I also, have a very nice camera I am bringing to take pictures and will share them when I return. I will post hopefully a few pictures, that I take with my phone, with my daily blog.
Wow, I have a lot to put together now, so I guess I should stop procrastinating, and see what I can get done. My last thought of the night, I promise. A lot of you are wondering why I am taking this journey, or why this is a dream of mine. Well, something deep down, within my soul has always spoken to me, telling me that I need to help others and give them love and attention, the best way I know how. I have always dreamed of working in a third world Country, where love and attention, seem to go unnoticed, and well, I feel I have enough love and attention to provide to anyone that wants a piece of what I have to offer. I am doing this now, because 2016 was the worst, yet best year of my life. After 3 deaths within 2 months, a failed marriage, unexpected surgery, and just one heck of a bad start to 2016, I was determined to end my year on a good note. I have already begun my journey with self-discovery, I have found inner peace and have truly become whole heartedly happy with who I am and where I want to be in this crazy world, and along with that old friends came back into my life, many new friendships have been formed, my career is in a great spot, and now somehow, someway, I have found a man that I love with all of my heart and connects with me deep down to my soul. So, my year was a world wind, I am not where I want to be yet, but I am well on my way, and this journey to Madagascar is exactly what I need for my soul, and to help continue discovering who I personally am.

So, thank you all for your love and support as I begin this absolutely scary, but thrilling Journey to Madagascar! I look forward to sharing my daily adventures with you all. Until next time.

Peace and Love,

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The Final Countdown
The Final Countdown