Leaving on a jet plane


I’m leaving soon. Very soon.

The last week I’ve spent packing and unpacking and packing again.

I’ve tried to think of what I’m bringing that I don’t need and what I’ve forgotten that I do need.

My packing list has been revised and edited several times. I’ve done my last-minute shopping. I’ve gone through the stress of packing with the excitement of leaving and I’m finally ready to go.

Italy, here I come!

I’m leaving to teach English in Italy for the summer.

A month ago I was offered the job and a few weeks ago I bought a one-way ticket.

I was planning on teaching English in China for a year, but that fell through after two months of planning mainly because of visa issues with the school. Luckily, Italy is there and waiting for me.

The job starts beginning of June, when airline prices are at their peak. When I left for my 20-month Europe trip, I flew over at the end of April and the one-way ticket to Dublin was about $100-200 less that what I found for end of May this year.

The trick to flying cheap in peak season: be flexible.

Italy is my final destination but this afternoon, I’m flying from Seattle to Newark airport. With some frequent flyer miles, I am able to go the whole way for free.

It ‘costs’ the same number of miles to fly out of state, regardless whether it’s Washington State to California or to New Jersey. Flights to Europe are much cheaper from the East Coast, so I took full advantage of them and found the domestic flight that gets me the furthest east with the least amount of miles spent.

To save over $100, I bought the ticket to Europe separately and I have a day and a half layover between the flights.

Monday night I arrive in Newark in the late evening and will make my way to New York City. I’ll have just one day to explore, then back to the airport I’ll go to check in for my next flight.

Wednesday evening I’ll fly to London via Iceland (just a 1.5 hour layover this time).

The flight is a long one. I leave Newark at 9.30p, have a short pitstop in Iceland, then arrive in London just after noon the next day.

All together, it’s about 9 hours on the plane. Including the first leg from Seattle to Newark, I’ll be in the air for a total of 14 hours.

I’ll obviously bring a book or two and music, but each time I prepare for a long flight like this, I end up sleeping the whole way. But if I don’t bring any books or music, I know I won’t be able to sleep and I’ll wish I’d brought them. Go figure.

Once I arrive in London, I’ll have about a week and a half before I need to be in Italy.

I’ll stay a bit in London, visiting friends and avoiding meandering tourists on the streets. I’ll make my way down to Italy by plane, train or ride-share by the first week in June and begin my training for the summer camp.

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