Saturday, November 11, 2006

The planners.


Here's proof. Lei's a manic planner. She showed up in my office this past week and handed me a project plan listing all the major tasks, dependencies and resource assignments that needed to be done in preparation for our trip. There were even a couple of checkmarks indicating a couple of completed tasks! No detail is too small for Lei - there are even separate task entries for packing the daypack and the backpack! 

Thursday, November 9, 2006

...and I'm waiting.

I booked my tour two nights ago and yesterday, I got an email from Kathy (the travel counselor at GAP) that there was a problem with confirming my ticket. Seems that my credit card transaction did not go through. Same thing happened with my trip to Peru. I checked my Visa account, on-line, and indeed there was no transaction made to the account the night before last. I emailed Kathy to let know, told her the same thing happened to me before, and asked her to check their reservation system. I got a reply back that she's checking into it and so I'm on hold......and waiting.

Tuesday, November 7, 2006

Okay, Houston, we may have a problem.

Lei's posted her packing list on her blog (http://wannabenomad.blogspot.com/2006/11/my-packing-list.html). If I'm bringing the proverbial kitchen sink, she's packing the entire house! Realistically, I think she can fit everything into her Kelty but Lei is tall and very slender - probably pushes the scale at 100 lbs. So, the big question is can she carry her packed Kelty? I couldn't help but shake my head (with a grin on my face) when we went down the list and she indicated why she needed every item....including her Game Boy. Hopefully, we won't have to hire a pack of camels just to carry her backpack :-)

Phobias, allergies and food tastes.

During our lunch time get together today, Lei asked me if I have any phobias and at first I replied that I didn't have any but actually I do.

Trip booked. Woohoo!

Lei and I had agreed to get together at lunch time today to book our trip but she was so excited that she went ahead and booked her trip in the morning. By the time lunch rolled around, she was getting antsy waiting to get a reply back from GAP. She wanted to call GAP but I told her that they would email her back to confirm her booking and to finalize the trip arrangements. I decided to see if I could calm her down by showing her (through emails) how I arranged my previous trip to Peru with GAP. I assured her it was an easy process - they assign a travel counselor to work with you and you can ask them as many questions as you need. The person I worked with was even able to make last minute changes for me.....all without any additional charge!

I did my booking tonight so both Lei and I are in holding pattern for now. Once we get our GAP tour confirmations, we'll then book our flights. By now, it did not come as a surprise to me that both Lei and I had discovered the same set of flights to get us from DC to Cairo and then from Amman back to DC.

Sunday, November 5, 2006

The packing list.

I learned in Peru that I can travel with very little luggage - on that trip, my backpack checked in at 8.5kg or about 20 pounds. So when I read that I was limited to 15kg or about 30lbs for this trip, I wasn't worried as I would have ten more pounds of stuff that I could bring along - important since I would be travelling for 3 weeks and not 2. Here's what I've managed to cram into my backpack and still stay under the weight limit!

Friday, November 3, 2006

....and then there were two.

When I came back from Peru in August 2006, Ian who is a colleague of mine at work, told me that a mutual colleague of ours, Lei, was also interested in travelling "off the beaten path". As I left Ian's office, I made a mental note to contact Lei - just to mention to her that I also enjoyed adventure travel. As often happens, I got distracted with work and forgot all about calling Lei.