Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Plane Tickets, Vaccinations & Packing - oh my!

We have plane tickets! Friday, January 14th about 3:00pm begins our journey. First Madison to Chicago with a reasonable layover and then the 15-hour direct flight to Abu Dhabi!! YIKES!

So, this week's focus has been on getting an appointment with the Travel Medical Desk to ensure all vaccinations are cared for, getting more information on what it will take to ship over our cat, Rogue, getting the smaller of our two cars sold and continuing to pack, sort, store and sell.

Travel Doctor
What an interesting job, huh? This guy handles all the requests at GHC for patients traveling to foreign countries. He researches the vaccinations and anything else needed for the country and then sets you up to travel. So, let's talk about what you'll need if when you come over to visit us... not too bad actually. First, schedule an appointment with the Travel Dr. through your insurance at least one month prior to your departure date as some vaccinations require a certain period of time prior to travel to get into your system. Here's what you'll most likely need if you don't already have it:
  • tetanus
  • typhoid (pills, no shot)
  • hepatitis
  • flu shot (you don't need it for Abu Dhabi, but you will be in a plane or airport for a while!)

Shipping the Kitty
Actually, this is proving to be a little easier than I first expected. First, there is a ton of information on the Internet and most vets have dealt with this more than you might imagine. While our vet hasn't shipped any animals to Abu Dhabi, they do have experience with Japan, Hawaii (one of the most restrictive) and Europe. Luckily, there is no quarantine period for Abu Dhabi, which may have been a show stopper for us. Mostly it's about having updated vaccinations and having a microchip embedded under the skin. Then it's about the paperwork and making sure you have the right crate for the airline. I'm currently working with my vet, a vet in Abu Dhabi and a pet shipping company to get it all to come together.

Sorting, Selling & Storing
We are not pack rats by any means, but boy it sure seems like we have a lot of stuff. The hardest part is trying to figure out what we should take the trouble to ship over. It's a slow process, but one we want to make sure we get right. And, if anyone is interested in a car or a house, please let me know! :)

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Such Mixed Emotions!

The goodbyes have started at work and it's harder than I thought. On the one hand, I am SO excited to start on this new adventure and on the other hand, TDS is like my family (even crazy Aunt ...) :) Everyone has been very positive and supportive and I've been humbled by some of the very nice comments. I'm really glad I have next week in the office to wrap things up. Not only will it give me a little more time, but there won't be many people around, so my real last day in the office will be a bit less emotional. Now, I just need to convince as many folks as possible to come and visit!!

Here's a photo of part of the training team and their rendition of Hello/Goodbye by the Beatles. Doctored lyrics courtesy of Butter.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

We're moving to Abu Dhabi

Well, it's official. We're moving to Abu Dhabi for a 3 year assignment with Epic Systems. Brian has been asked to head up the Epic Middle East office, which is actually located in Dubai and help with the installation of a hospital in Abu Dhabi where we'll be living. The process has taken more than a year, but we're finally 90% sure we're going. The current plan is to head over mid-January so we're now in the throes of all kinds of decisions and planning: house, cats, cars, stuff, bills ... we're trying to take it one step at a time so we don't freak out.

As for me, I'm not sure what I'll do over there. My plan is to find a job in Training or HR and from the brief job hunting I've done on line, it looks like that might be very possible. Time will tell.