Noi6 means "the 6 of us" in Romanian.

We are five, you are the sixth one.

We thank you for joining us in our trip around the world...

Monday, September 19, 2011


 Maria: "What are we going to do today? Because according to My Schedule, I have to do this and this and this and this and—oh my God! I almost forgot! I have to do that! And then I have to write fifteen thousand words by lunch and—"
If you've read Ileana's post , then you may recall the above passage.

I feel kind of bad admitting that everything that Ileana writes in that little passage is absolutely true. Exaggerated, of course, because Ileana tends to exaggerate, but otherwise quite true.

One of the reasons that Ileana capitalizes "My Schedule" is because it really is capitalized. Better yet, at this moment, it could be in all caps, something like MY SCHEDULE.

Why? Because if I didn't have a schedule in this insanely busy month, all would be chaos. I would have no schoolwork done, no writing done, no books read, nothing.
Without a schedule to follow, I would be floating in an enormous ocean, trying to grab at flotsam and jetsam without managing to hold on for very long, because I don't know which way the shore is.
Without a schedule to follow, I would be surfing the internet all day. You cannot imagine how terrible this is when a deadline is looming and you have a Herculean amount of work to do. 
I'm not joking. I have at least 600 pages of work to outline before the end of September, and after that I have another 200 pages of history to read. This is a large amount, even if it might sound paltry to some. Correction: this is a HUGE amount.
So MY SCHEDULE is very, very important. MY SCHEDULE is currently something like this, and I'm not putting it here to brag or anything. I'm doing it to illustrate just how busy my life is right now.

I wake up at 5:30am. The alarm goes off, and I wake up. One of the reasons I'm able to do this is because I go to bed at 9 or I sleep in the car if I somehow miss an hour of sleep because of movies. By 5:40, I am downstairs, dressed, with my bed made.

I start writing at 6am. After checking my email (the emails are mostly from facebook, if at all, so this is simply a reason to procrastinate). I write at least 3000 words, usually about 4000, until 7 am. I use a timer, and the reason I write is because my goal for the trip is to write 1,600,000 words from September 1st, 2011, to January 31st, 2013. I'm at 54,000 words so far. The words that count towards this project are: brainstorms, short stories, planning, blog entries, novels, and flash fiction.

At 7am, I begin schoolwork. I generally start with something easy, like a grammar worksheet, but occasionally I'll start with Psychology.

At 8am, I take my first break. This means that I eat, unload the dishwasher (if it's my turn), brush my teeth, and read something relaxing. This might be Shakespeare, or it might be the current novel I'm working at. Sometimes, perhaps from some strange perception of fun, I sit down and start Psychology.

At 8:30am, Public School begins. This means sitting on the couch, listening to explanations of the Divine Liturgy, and then French. Time in French is spent waiting for the other classmates, or trying desperately not to look stupid as you try to pronounce le.

At 9:30am, I shut myself up in the TV room and begin school. Again. This means another 3 hours and a half of Psychology or NOX. Usually I get caught up in it and don't realize that time passes, which is very, very good.

At 1pm, Lunch! Lunch is not as interesting as it might be for the average high schooler. Lunch means a brain swimming with psychological terms (social clock, endorphins, sensation, etc.), half-thought-out plans for the rest of the day, and trying to understand Mom and Dad's conversation about… whatever country is the subject today.

2pm… free time! Free time is a strange concept. I used to understand what this meant, but MY SCHEDULE is optimistic. It does not believe for one second that I can not possibly finish what it has set out for me to do. On top of this, Psychology has tantalized me with an interesting heading that promises amazing information later. Thus "free time" means Psychology. In the rare cases when this doesn't happen, I read.

3:30pm, everyone else goes back to school. Though this time varies, it's usually 3:30pm. I'm usually already at school, so I continue doing whatever it is I do.

If no other prior engagement exists, such as Tae Kwon Do, singing lessons, etc, I might even do schoolwork until 7pm, finally finishing the Psychology pages, and feeling very, very proud of myself.

All that said, an interesting phenomenon of MY SCHEDULE is:

- I feel MUCH happier getting up at 5:30 am. The house is silent. There is no one downstairs to discuss anything with, and by the time they all come downstairs, I have enough work done to feel very productive.
Whereas everyone else's first interactions are with the other members of the family, thus promoting a general feeling of laziness, my first interactions are with myself, which means that I generally have a feeling of: "Today I will actually finish everything on my very long to-do list!"

With MY SCHEDULE having been sufficiently explained, I think that it is a good time to say:
We have exactly FOUR WEEKS left before we leave this house! And yet, I am excited about one thing. I am very excited about this, and I bet you a million dollars you cannot guess what it is. I'll let you guess now. Write it down, and then scroll down, and see if you can tell what it is.

Okay, maybe you haven't written it down yet. Maybe you just scrolled down to see what it was. I really want you to try and guess. 

Alright, ready?

The thing I am most looking forward to when we leave is:
(1) I will not have a wardrobe to worry about. There is no place I can go in the world, no matter how fancy it is, where I will have to worry about any of the following:
- Shoes
- Jewelry
- Skirts
- Stockings
- Hair
- Whether or not I've worn this outfit too many times or not.
I won't have a CHOICE! And, best of all, everyone I see will never have seen me before, and also I am traveling with a back pack, so they won't expect me to have fancy things! 
I am not joking. I am seriously most looking forward to wearing the same five clothing items for a year without having to worry about it.

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