The last few days before a vacation can be the most aggravating. There always seems to be a significnatly lengthy list of things that must be done. Since I am leaving for two weeks, and work has only fully comprehended this in the last two days, this list seems compounded. Yet, I'm not exactly in the best mind-set for buckling down and accomplishing much of anything because, you know, I'm ready for my vacation now.
So I've been making lists of "must do" before Friday items. One for work and one for personal. The crazy thing about my personal list is suddenly I feel this urgent need to attend to tasks I have long neglected such as getting rid of the dead plant that has been sitting in my window for a couple of months. I managed to check that one off the list Monday night. Of course I also toss in cleaning the apartment and emptying the fridge in addition to the following: pack (duh!), water plants, laundry make river playlist (any fun suggestions?), make trail mix (this year's will be similar to the Iceland mix, I picked up ingredients last night), pick up new contacts (they have been ready for weeks), refill prescriptions, get pedicure and have a variety of waxing procedures - one must be prepared before going au naturale.
My living room is currently centered around a bright yellow North Face duffle bag into which I toss various items as I come across them or as I think of them or as I purchase them for Saturday's departure. I've actually avoided going into my storage unit too far in advance to pull out my camping gear out of a fear that I will get too excited (I'm nerdy like that).
However, the task that is most irksome to me right now has not required any effort on my part. In fact, it has required me to abstain from a certain daily task and yet it bothers me the most.
Let me explain.
A couple of years ago when I went to Guatemala I was happy to embrace my natural self and let certain grooming habits take a hiatus - namely, shaving. I generally have no problem with this aspect of camping - it comes with the territory. Although we were lucky enough to have a shower in the village where we were working, it wasn't exactly hot and steamy water. The shower was outside with plastic tarps attached to wooden posts surrounding it for modesty's sake. Privacy was relatively good but one never knew where our curious young observers might wander (the kids followed us constantly and were often staring in the open air windows of the health center where we slept when we went to bed and there when we woke up in the morning). Combined with cold water, showers were relatively brief and shaving was not exactly a priority. Which was fine.
But after we left the village we took one of the best boat rides of my life down the Rio Dulce which terminated in perhaps the nastiest city I've ever visited - Livingston. At one point as our boat sped across the water and I cradled the back of my head in my hands and stretched out across the front of the boat facing my fellow passengers seated in the back, a friend of mine did a mock imitation of my pose and then nodded at his armpit. I then inspected my own neglected armpits that had been left to their own wild devices. It was truly disgusting. I immediately pulled my arms down to my side and hung my head in shame.
It reminded me of when I first realized I needed to start shaving my armpits. I believe it was the spring of 5th grade. At that point I may or may not have shaved my legs a few times whether I needed it or not - just to feel grown up. I may have asked my mom for a bra despite there being no evidence of a need for one. I was at my friend Alex Meadows' house laying out on her deck, I stretched out in my swimming suit on the towel next to hers and when I raised my arms above my head she said something to the effect of "eeewwww! don't you shave your pits? because you need to!" Not having yet experienced any of the tell-tale signs of puberity promised in Judy Blume's books I was shocked to see a few long (!!) black hairs curling out from under each arm. Horrified, I am quite sure that is the day I started shaving my arm pits every day.
Honestly, hairy legs I can live with for a few days. But hairy pits? Ick.
If I could just collect myself enough to commit to the lazer removal process I wouldn't have to face such irksome issues of facing a week in the wilderness with no shower or razer and lots of swimsuit time. But, alas, I hate making appointments and I hate running errands. So my arm pit hair removal process remains antiquated.
A friend of mine had her arm pits waxed for her wedding so she would have a smooth look for her halter wedding dress and not have to bother with shaving on her honeymoon in Greece. So I consulted with her over the details and she advised growing the hair out for a week.
I am 5 days into the growth period and it is terrible. I am convinced I sweat more and I have to be very selective of the tops I wear because even cap sleeve and short sleeve tops can reveal a glimpse at the pits if one is not careful. Nobody needs to see that.
I think the estiticion will have ample hair to work with by the time I drop by for my waxing on Saturday morning. I'm just hoping I can continue to resist grabbing my razer each morning and shaving it all off before then.
Wish me luck!