We got to Ocean Beach a few minutes before sunset on our last evening in San Francisco. When we moved from the Mission to the Sunset a year and five months ago, I didn’t anticipate developing such an affinity for the quiet streets and wild oceanfront of the city’s western flank. In search of a change of scenery and cheap rent, we landed there mostly because it was near SF State. Now I joke that I can’t see myself ever living east of 42nd Ave.
We haven’t spent a lot of time dwelling on leaving—instead we’ve been focused on packing our things and prepping for Stephanie’s grad school interviews. I suppose it doesn’t feel like we’ve left yet because we haven’t decided where we’re going. Earlier this week we loaded all our worldly possessions into a 7×7×8′ PODS container (sound familiar?), creating a time capsule we plan to open in six months, delivered wherever we end up.
We now have a plan for how the next few months should unfold. After Stephanie’s Fresno State interview, we’re heading to Tahoe for the bulk of February, fulfilling a dream we’ve both had to be “snowbound” and giving us the space and time to decide where she’ll earn her Doctorate of Physical Therapy (DPT) (see: Snowbound in Tahoe). After that, we’ll visit my sister in Las Vegas en route to Arizona, where we plan to hike the 800-mile Arizona Trail (AZT) from Mexico to Utah. That should occupy us for March and April, at least. Then in May we’ll stop by Austin to see my parents, my brother, and his girlfriend before flying to France to see Stephanie’s family in May and June—which may be our last opportunity until her DPT program ends in 2022! Sometime in July we’ll return to the US intent on finding and furnishing an apartment in time for Stephanie to begin classes in mid-August.