As many of you may know, on the last day of first year exams at UGA law, you are handed a packet with instructions and exercises to “try out” for the Georgia Law Review, Georgia Journal of International and Comparative Law, and the Intellectual Property Law Journal. Two exercises: one 12 page paper and one editing exercise. It is a very big honor if you make it, so there’s a bit of pressure, albeit mostly put on yourself by yourself. You have about 3 weeks to complete it—just what you want to do after the most grueling school year of your life, right?! :)
Anyway, I had to lug the thick packet and a few books with me to the South Pacific. Cuz, ya know, I didn’t already have enough to pack. (Okay, okay, I know I have a toiletry addiction). So, while I was definitely tempted to just relax and stare at the beautiful view off our porch, instead, I hauled my computer outside with me, and then quarantined myself back inside when I couldn’t concentrate. :) And then finally, one magical night- I was finished!!!
I was able to simply e-mail the paper. The editing exercise, on the other hand, had to be completed with red ink and the original had to be mailed in with two color copies. Okay. I found a red pen to buy at the Uni post office. Yay! So, upon completion, I was on the prowl for a color copier. The one in the law school was apparently only black and white..okay, no problem. I asked John, and he recommended a printing shop. I called them, and the copier was broken. Time to break out the phone book.
Second print shop- no color copier. Third print shop- no color copier. Now I’m starting to panic. I call the VERY LAST print shop in the city and THANK GOD, they had one AND it was workin'. I’ve never been so relieved to hear that someone had a color copier. Mind you, all of this was through accents, confusion, etc. I struggle a little with communication here (yes, even though they speak English), so phoning, er, ringing people up is not very pleasant.
So, print shop found. Then I had to coordinate with Vincent, the driver, to take me the next morning. He took the address home that night to look the place up. The next morning, he dropped me off in the city for my first outing without Tess. I try to walk confidently everywhere, but I wonder if everyone can tell I’m like a scared like a little puppy. I am afraid of: 1. being raped (a worry from my mom), 2. being sold into sexual slavery (a worry from my sister), and 3. being murdered (a worry from my dad)—and maybe all 3 at once! Anyway, I make it into the print shop, but it sure ain’t no Kinko’s. It was kind of warehouse-like, with a cement floor and a counter. There were no machines for customers; you had to hand everything over to the staff. They did a good job, although it was $50. Eeks. The lady gasped when she saw my name on my credit card and sort of drew attention to me in the shop (although people were already staring at the white American). After disappointing them by saying I was not related to the prez, it was time for the next leg of the journey- shipping!
We drove awhile to the DHL office- it was also the headquarters for the country, so it was more of a warehouse with a tiny counter for shipping. The shipping was about $20- cheaper than the printing, which surprised me. And they said that the package would be delivered in 2-4 days. Daaaamn! Can they ship me home when it’s time?? Apparently things are faster going to the U.S. rather than coming from the U.S. So, I shipped the packet and with it released the last remaining bits of stress and pressure from my time as a 1L. (Oh, except for the wait for grades…minor detail ;) )
So, that was a long, dramatic story to convey that it was a different, strange experience to do simple business tasks here, making me realize how easy life is back home. Say hello to the good ol’ U.S. of A. for me!