What a whirlwind week we’ve had, and we’re just about ready to hop on that midnight plane to Panama on Wednesday. Hmm, “Midnight Plane to Panama” – sounds a bit like a spy novel!
By far our biggest achievement in this past week has been getting all of the dogs’ paperwork squared away, with every “i” dotted and “t” crossed for both the airline and the Panamanian government. Because I am married to the world’s most organized man, this went very, very smoothly with only one little moment of panic at the USDA office when the dude behind the counter thought we were missing part of the vet form.
DRUM ROLL PLEASE: Here’s the stamped, signed, and blessed vet form for Rosie, complete with apostile (authentication) by the Panamanian consulate on the back.
Here’s a tip: while we were at the Panamanian consulate, we got also got our marriage license and birth certificates apostiled. Down the road, if we decide to go for permanent visas in Panama, we’ll hopefully have saved ourselves some time and effort — and we also ordered our FBI background checks a few weeks ago (another requirement for the visa application). From what we’ve been told, getting the dogs imported is a cakewalk compared to the visa process and we figured we’d do as much as we could in advance.
So, besides sitting around twiddling our thumbs, here’s how we spent the rest of our time last week:
- Had our last garage sale and sold our remaining car, the rest of our furniture, and our bikes (that was a sad day).
- Slogged through awful traffic down to San Diego to store keepsakes that aren’t coming with us in our friend Donna’s storage unit. Donna lives on her boat in the Bay of Panama and we’re looking forward to seeing her in just a few days!
- Shipped four big boxes of stuff to my parents in Austin (it will come down with us later)
- Had the final walk-through with our home buyer
- Ate ourselves silly at our favorite restaurants. Yes, shameless foodies that we are, we actually made a written list of restaurants we wanted to hit and food we wanted to eat that might be hard to find down in Panama!
- Got together with our closest friends to say our final goodbyes
- Put in a full week of work on top of everything else
And here’s what’s left:
- Pack. Yes, you read that right. We haven’t really gotten to focus yet on the stuff we’re taking on the plane because
we’ve been so busy with the stuff we were selling or leaving behind. STUFF! Is there any end to it?
- Make a final Goodwill run and return the rental car
- Get the girls in for one last grooming so they can enter their new country in style
- Get picked up on Wednesday by our lovely friends Jake and Sue, who will take us to the Copa cargo office to leave two dog-filled crates, and then to catch our flight to Panama City.
SEE YOU ON THE OTHER SIDE!!