The last eleven days have brought considerable change. I will start a job this week, file for a temporary residence permit in South Africa as swiftly as possible, and have contracted to sell my Nashville home at the end of October. It all started with a video conference on September 18th with a principal investigator at Colorado State and another at Stellenbosch University. As described in my preceding blog post, we decided to move in two directions at once, where I begin collaboration with Colorado State at the same time as I press to begin my move to South Africa. That strategy has already borne considerable fruit.
The first outcome was a change in my planned road trip to Kansas City. The morning after I arrived at the home of my parents, I hopped back in my car to continue to Ft. Collins, CO. I was able to visit with the team of scientists at the Colorado State Foothills Campus who investigate tuberculosis and other microbial diseases. I was gratified to see that the CDC maintains a facility just a short walk away from the Research Innovation Center.
During my time in Ft. Collins, I filed paperwork with human resources. As of October 1st, I will be a “Visiting Scientist” at Colorado State. This position will allow me to begin work on the shared goals between this university and Stellenbosch. It will certainly be a relief to have some money coming into my bank accounts and not merely out of them! I also visited with the Proteomics and Metabolomics Facility on the main campus. I hope to learn more about the unique bioinformatics pipeline they have assembled for fielding Waters MSE data. I felt grateful that we could accomplish so much in one day’s visit.
After a few days with my family in Kansas City, I returned to Nashville last night. In the course of that drive, I finalized a contract to sell my home in Nashville on October 30th. As I learned just before arriving in Cuba, a contract to sell one’s home is not a perfect guarantee that it will happen, but I’m excited, just the same. The timing would be nearly ideal. In order to sell my house by that date, though, I also need to schedule the shipping container [click it, if only for the music!] that will carry my furniture to Cape Town. I will be without my things for two months, but I hope I’ll be able to live out of suitcases for that interval.
Today I hope to acquire the last documents I will need to file my Department of Home Affairs 1738 form, requesting a Temporary Residence Permit by the Critical Skills route. Once I file the 1738 (hopefully within a week), I will expect to leave the country within a month and a half. In fact, the document asks the date of the flight that will take me to South Africa. I expect that my flight to Cape Town will be possible by early November.
The clock is ticking!