Now that I've nailed down everything at school and done my rehearsal packing to make sure I'll have what I need and that it all fits in my duffle, I'm finally getting excited to head down to Costa Rica and meet the people I'll be working with for the next week. I fly out of Newark tomorrow (Saturday) mid-afternoon, spend the night in San Jose (more or less in the middle of the country), and then head west Sunday morning via plane to Tamarindo, the airport closest to the expedition site. I gather it's quite warm and sunny these days in Costa Rica (and not the rainy season, as it was this past August when I was there), and, as much as I love the winter and the snow, I have to say, it will be nice to hang out in shorts and t-shirts for a few days. Senora Epstein gave me a little farewell travel kit, so I'm now all stocked up on sunscreen, lip balm, antibacterial Wet Ones, and Clorox wipes (to which she affixed a note: "Not for your body!!!" -- she takes such very good care of me, and I'm a better person for it). I'll get my dog, Jake, down to my sister's tomorrow, and then it's off to airport at noon.
A big thanks to everyone at Collegiate who pitched in to make this trip possible for me. I hope I do all of you and the school proud!