What am I doing at 11:52pm on a school night? I'm photocopying my massage license, certificates, and passport. Why?
BECAUSE MY WORK PERMIT PAPERWORK CAME YESTERDAY!
Yeah, I might have cried a little bit. It feels so exciting and overwhelming and real now. This year-and-a-half process is starting to come to a close. Actually the hard work is just now starting, but at least the end is in sight!
I had to sign a bunch of Labour and Immigration documents for my permit, as well as my contract with Sole', and have to send off copies of my license/certificates/passport/etc. In addition I'm required to send 1-2 character reference letters. I guess this is so they know I'm not going to come on island and murder a bunch of people while smuggling drugs and mooching off the government? I dunno. At any rate I asked Jenni to write one (her response: "But I don't really like you." Ha. So so funny!) and for the other I asked Angie, my best friend from high school who has known me the longest and the best. Of anyone, she can give an accurate character analysis. I know that I could have asked numerous people for references and they'd have jumped at the chance. I'm so damn lucky!
Tomorrow during lunch I'll get the passport-sized photos that are requested, then I just have to tweak my resume a bit and wait for the letters and I'll be ready to mail it all back! We're shooting to FedEx it out on Monday. Then we wait for the approval from Labour and Immigration. After THAT, I have to get a health exam and TB test, as well as my (non-existant) police records from every city I've lived in the past 5 years. Then we wait. Again.
To think that in roughly 4 months I will be living in the Caribbean and starting an entirely new chapter of my life is just mind blowing. I am not looking forward to the numerous and painful goodbyes I'm going to have to make, however. It already breaks my heart every time one of my beloved guests says, "I'm going to miss you so much!" or "What am I going to do without you?" or "I guess I'll just have to come to the BVI for my massages now!" I'm trying to get in as much Sister Time as possible, because I know that I'm going to be sitting in my lonely apartment in that period of time before I have any friends or social life bawling my eyes out because all I want in the world is to be hanging out with my sister. The time I spend with my friends and family is precious. There are so many people I want to see before I go and I worry that I won't have the time. I suppose it's on me to make the time.
My tentative plan is to go for two years or so, then perhaps come back to a really good opportunity that's been presented to me. However, there is the understanding that I may get to Tortola and never, ever want to leave. I know what happens when I try to micromanage my life; it falls to shit. Instead, I'm going to leave my options and my heart open to whatever presents itself. If that means coming back to the PNW, fantastic. If I'm led to stay in the BVI, then so be it. One way or another, everything turns out the way it should in the end.
And to all the people who keep telling me they're going to come visit me - DO IT! I want visitors!