I am generally a very last-minute person. However, doing everything last minute is not ideal when you’re abroad when the last thing you want is for your last week to go by in a flash. That is why I value the second last week as much as I do. Here are the things I will do through this second-last week of my trip to ensure peak productivity and maximum happiness:
I set a day for errands
There are great services in Chile that are honestly cheaper and better than in Canada; haircuts are more affordable, shoe repairs are cheaper and faster, leather products are nicer and the handcrafted jewelry here is to die for. I always set an entire day to do all the souvenir and personal shopping that is left to be done. These are some things that are necessary but that are actually time-consuming and extremely annoying when left for the last minute.
I don’t like goodbyes but I like them even less when I have to cram them all within the space of a few days before a flight. Goodbyes suck but I find it’s better to start them early and get some out of the way on the second-last week than to call off plans or activities on the last week in order to see everyone you need to see.
Work work work
Although it may have felt like a vacation, I came to Chile to do some real substantial work, and there are people who are expecting to read a grade A essay upon my return. Whereas I don’t mind doing schoolwork at the last minute at U of T, I made sure I organized my time here so that my work is done by the end of the second-last week, leaving the very last week entirely to me myself and I, and no books.
Go watch that movie
I like to think about the small and simple activities that I thought about doing in Santiago but that kept getting pushed off because they’re not that pressing and “I’m only leaving at the end of August – I have time.” For instance, going out to eat at that nice restaurant, watch that movie that’s been in theatres for 4 weeks already, or visit a particular neighbourhood; on the second-last week I start thinking about all the places I want to go to and things I absolutely want to do before leaving, and I start planning.
Prepare for arrival
Preparing for arrival is the worse part of leaving because the thought of returning to the regular routine can be stress-inducing. In my case, there are some real important things I need to take care of upon my return like moving out of Toronto and securing a job. I like to start thinking about these details early on to make sure that life isn’t hitting me like a pile of bricks the moment I’ll step out of the plain.
Great song for outdoor errands