Final Preparations

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T-minus 24 hours before I leave Miami to head for Atlanta to hang out with my brothers for a day… then on Sunday on to Kunming, China.  I fly from Atlanta to South Korea for a 15 hour flight and then directly on to Kunming for another five hour flight. I woke up this morning and, finally, the nerves have set in that I am leaving this country for a very long time. I’ve always been kind of a global mutt moving from country to country, but this time feels a little different since I have to do it in an entirely different language.

I think I have everything prepared, but if I forgot anything I’m sure they make it in China! My sister and my dad are already over there preparing for my arrival. I just found out that the surgeon, Dr. Zhu Hui, would like to perform spinal surgery within a week of my arrival in order to get me moving into the walking program as quickly as possible. I suppose I should be more nervous for the surgery, but I’m not. I think I’m more nervous for how to explain a sterile catheter procedure to my new Chinese caregivers in Chinese. That’s right, they don’t speak English… This should be fun.   I have been practicing these conversations with my online tutor and I have so many scenarios for how this could go wrong, but in the end I’m just going to have to go with the flow and laugh about it.

On a completely separate note, I’m sure many of you have heard about this viral phenomenon that has gone global called the Harlem shake. I was so amused by these videos and did not see any handicap Harlem shake videos so to speak. So, when I get to Kunming I’m going to try my damnedest to try to explain this concept to the Chinese at the rehabilitation center so that we make our own Chinese Harlem paralyzed shake video. Oh yes, and I can just see quads hanging from lift’s swinging in the air trying to shake anything that will move 🙂 Hell, I might even try and see if we can do in international Harlem shake on the plane over to South Korea.

This will be my last post until I get to China and even then it may take me a few days because I’m sure I will have a bunch of censorship issues when getting on a certain website until I set up a VPN, kind of like a virtual wormhole to give me access to most websites.  I remember the first time I went to China in 2000 when a dial-up modem was considered a luxury.

I want to take a moment before I out to thank each and every one of you that have supported me over the last two and half years, and extend an invitation to you if you ever travel in Southeast Asia to come hang out in Kunming for a bit. I most likely will be living in Asia for the foreseeable future.

Talk to you in China!

Ali

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