#Maddie2017Challenge: Week 2

So far, so good for 2017! I’ve been doing my best to keep up and post photos daily, even while on vacation. It’s been easy since I’ve been in service areas, but later this week we’ll be in more remote parts of Iceland, and I’m not quite sure if I’ll even have service out there. The camper van does have WiFi, so I’ve been able to keep up with posting a pic a day to Instagram at least.

I do have a few more photos pre-Iceland to show since my last update.

I finished my 5-night stretch off strong — well, as strong as anyone can working 60 hours in 5 days. I was actually running a little late for work, but when I stepped outside and saw this crazy cloud, I couldn’t help but snap a photo!

Talk about an ominous sign on the way to work… #blackcloud

Then, Aaron finally came up to Austin to visit me (and bring oh, my passport, my jacket, and other clearly non-essential items I needed for my trip). We were craving Thai food, and Jonny recommended we head to Sway off S 1st street. It was definitely a good decision!

First date night of 2017 thanks to this handsome guy who came up to Austin for the night despite his busy residency schedule 😍 also thanks to @jonnyyclarke for the restaurant recommendation!

We started with the tofu, shrimp, and pork satay, which was really tasty. Except for Aaron ate all the tofu portion before I got to taste it, but he said it was good and I trust his judgement. We also had the tom kha gai, my favorite Thai coconut soup. It ended up being really delicious, but also REALLY spicy for me… like, unenjoyable spicy. I was pretty bummed because otherwise all the flavors were super delicious!

Our main course was the son in law, which was a “crispy farm egg, braised pork shoulder, thick soy, and nahm prik pla” dish. (Sidenote– grad school has me wanting to add citations every time I use quotation marks. Sigh.) It was all a really delicious meal, we practically had to waddle out of there!

We came back to the house, where all the dogs immediately cuddled up to Aaron, leaving no room for me. Eventually I fought them off, and Aaron actually was able to stay the night instead of heading back to San Antonio… well, as much as I can say he “stayed the night” when he still had to leave at 4am anyways.

These rude dogs left no room for me to cuddle 😒 #latergram

Aaron has had time off since I started my Austin contract, but I’ve always just gone home to see him instead of having him come up here. Honestly, I’ve gone home to San Antonio four separate times since I’ve been in Austin… And I’ve only been in Austin 8 weeks! I am so happy I have such a great guy who takes the time to drive up here to bring me all the things I forgot at home, and stays for less than 12 hours, just to see me before I’m gone, out of the country, possibly out of touch. It was so good to see him up here in Austin before I left for my trip. I have a few days off once I get back, I’m planning to go to San Antonio not only to see Aaron but also to get things done in SA (aka, my hair and nails).

I’ve been in Austin 8 weeks, which also means I’m at the halfway point of my contract! It really does fly by, especially when you actually enjoy going to work. I have some ideas for where I would like to go next, but it’s still a bit too early to start the search for when I would be ready to start. I trust my recruiter, Alexis (with Randstad Healthcare), will be on top of it all when the time comes!

Early (let me repeat: EARLY) Friday morning, Angie, Jonny, and I headed up to New York City and met up with Stephanie. We were in New York Friday night and most of Saturday, then got on the overnight flight to Reykjavik. We landed in KEF, the airport right outside Reykjavik, early Sunday morning, and got on a bus to the famed Blue Lagoon. I’m trying not to go into too much detail, because I plan on writing an entire separate post for my Iceland trip, but here are the pictures I’ve taken so far up until today!

We are heading out to black sand beaches, abandoned plane crashes, Vik, and Jökulsárlón tomorrow, then fly back to New York City on Friday. We get a couple nights in New York again, and I’ll be back in Texas late Sunday!

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