The pieces are starting to fall into place. We’ve agreed upon the freight company and picked the dates we want to pack and load the container (February 21 & 22) and we’ve picked our fly-out date: February 28th. This all finally gelled when our dear friend Daniel decided when and where he wants to go to celebrate his 40th (This new tradition was instituted by Bruce’s 40th last spring: When you mark one of your significant birthdays, you get to chose a destination of choice and rally for all your friends to join you. Bruce chose New Zealand and ten of us made the trek last March. It was incredibly fun) The celebrant’s destination spot: Iceland for his birthday on June 19th. Wow, to be in Iceland not only for D’s 40th, but for the summer solstice was an incredible draw. Could we finagle going to Iceland after only having been in New Zealand for a little over three months? Interesting concept. We originally had been thinking we’d be back in SF for two-plus months from July through September so as to miss part of the NZ winter and to be able to go to Burning Man. But we also have constraints: in order to be able to renew our 2-year residency visas, we have to spend 183 days of each of the first two years in the country. We whipped out the calendar and an Excel spreadsheet and started calculating the days. If we came back to the US on June 15th AND went to Iceland AND stayed for Burning Man (occurs over Labor Day weekend) AND flew back to New Zealand on September 11 we would make 190 days in NZ for 2006. The decision was easy. We’re in! We’re going to Iceland! We’re coming back to SF for the summer! The adventure is coming together.