It is official now: we will be leaving the U.S. on September 13th and arrive in Sulaimani in the morning of September 15th after an overnight stay in Amman, Jordan. So, only 11 more days in the U.S. Carolyn has been hard at work arranging our business affairs so our son Christopher and his wife Bettie can take care of things for us in our absence. It has not been until we think through all of the issues of utilities, insurance, taxes, mail, and house and yard upkeep that we understand how much of our time is taken up with the business of living. I have new appreciation for the efforts of persons who join the Peace Corps or become missionaries for extended periods of time.
We now have our teaching schedules for the fall term. Carolyn will be teaching two sections of managerial accounting and working with the business office operation, and I will be teaching three sections of the second half of their west/world civilization course which is required of all students. Having gotten out of teaching survey courses 20 years ago, I am amazed and impressed with the on-line resources available to professors and students. Nevertheless, I am still bringing with me several hundred digital images on CD-roms to supplement what I do in the classes.
Planning on packing has proven a challenge. We know that there are four distinct seasons in Sulaimani, so we have to bring winter clothes as well as warm weather clothes for the early summer weeks. We have always tried to travel light but on this occasion we will have to be carrying a lot of clothes and other materials needed for living there. The attached photo of our mammoth suicases gives you an idea of how much we will be carrying.
In addition to our personal effects, I intend to bring several books that I need for teaching. Given the weight of books I am forced to keep my wish list of teaching materials short. We have Amazon Kindles for recreational reading and for downloading the Washington Post on a daily basis.
Planning on leaving reminds us of all we will be leaving behind for nine months: family, friends, home, familiar routines, clean water, etc. But we are looking forward with anticipation to the new that will be coming into our lives.
We will send our next post after we arrive in Iraq.
For those wanting to know more about the region where we will be living, you might check out these URLs: