as i don't have much time, i better write quick. in less than 12 hours i'm leaving on a bus to new york city, the first step of what will eventually take me to the great smoky mountains national park by the end of monday. so of course i'm not even packed yet. i've got things strewn all over my living room, still haven't stuffed anything into my backpack. for someone who's done a bit of traveling, i still get anxious before trips. nervous enough that i think it'd be better not to go and stay home. but i know once i'm out there, i never regret an opportunity to travel and experience new things.

my parents drove me out to the reading REI so i could buy a pair of merrell moab with 20% discount on their big memorial day weeklong sale. there was a line of people checking out, with 5 registers opened. not only did they have the moab, but they had it in my size (7.5) in men, which is really what i wanted in the first place, 3 hiking shoes purchases later. i've compared the men and the women moab and they look exactly the same, just different colors.

i bought my lucky star bus ticket to new york, now $28 for a single trip. the days of $15 tickets are long gone, thanks to annoying things like regulations and terminal fees. i look back nostalgically when the chinatown bus used to actually leave from the streets of the chinatown, and on weekends the place would be a mess of people trying to leave town, standing out in the rain and the snow and the freezing cold.

i've managed to find everything i was looking for exception for a few things: comfortable pants that aren't too tight in the waist (curse you weight gain!), my hydration pack (haven't seen it in ages, i'm sure even if i found it, it's so old that the plastic must've fused together by this point), and my mp3 player (could be in a winter jacket pocket - no, i just checked, still missing).

in the late afternoon i planted some more seedlings in my parents' backyard (this morning i arrived with another box of mostly flower seedlings, still have a box of tiny columbine seedlings in my backyard, my father will go pick them up tomorrow after he gets off from work, and also help me bring out the garden trash - this weekend is unfortunately my week to do it). the planting was complicated by the fact that my sister took home a box of plants but it was the wrong box as she left with nearly all my tomato plants.

dinner came in the form of burger king. when the cashier gave me my change, i saw there was a chinese renminbi coin in the mix. this is my first time seeing chinese coins in my american change.

my bus leaves tomorrow at noontime, so i still have a few hours tomorrow morning to finish packing. i always wait until the last minute. maybe the lesson to learn here is to prepare earlier for next time.