14 Days: Master List
There now sits on my desk a paper that says "Master List:" subtitled "Do before you leave."
Directly below these words is written a date, 28 August, followed by notes for a flight, and its confirmation code.
Below this are four underlined categories spaced unevenly down the page. The first is College, then Scholarships, Home, and Other. While the other three currently have three tasks each, the "Home" category has eleven - and I keep thinking of more to add.
I think about the summer homework I had for high school during the past three summers of my life and realize that those assignments are absolutely incomprable to what I have to do in the next fourteen days. Not only is there far more that I have to do, but the tasks I have before me are of an entirely different nature than I have faced in all the final weeks of summer vacations in the past - and there is one task in particular unlike any other I will ever have: On my Master List, it is denoted simply as PACK.
That's it, folks. I'm leaving. The longest I've ever been anywhere without a family member with me can't be much more than a week. And living someplace other than Ketchikan... Well, that's beyond my memory. August 28th is my independence day. Not complete independence, mind you - I'd never want to be fully independent of my family. My declaration of independence is but a simple act of physically separating myself from the home I've known so long. That separation will be exciting and difficult, enjoyable and saddening, incredibly meaningful yet also perhaps less significant than one might think. I know it will be all of the above and much much more.
Among the tasks on my Master List are some of the kinds of jobs I've been doing all summer, unnecessary things I simply want to get done, (such as finishing the book I just started two days ago), as well as specific things to do for Georgetown and all the necessities that go with getting money won from scholarships successfully delivered. I know that when I get down to it I will be ready to leave. I am ready to leave; it's just that I also have to be ready to get off on a great foot in my leaving. This is the rest of my life we're talking about - and I want to do everything right.