We finally got our hotel for New Orleans booked!  After hours (seriously) of searching haunted hotels and B&Bs and then looking at their reviews on TripAdvisor and then going back and forth with Joey, I finally found a place in the French Quarter that is haunted, not overly floral, and not overly expensive: the Omni Royal Orleans.  We got a room through hotels.com for half of the rate on Omni's own website! 

I also finally got another item crossed off my list today.  After one exam (including a urinalysis), three separate blood draws, a second urinalysis, an attempted pick up of incomplete paperwork and finally today's pickup of actually completed paperwork - yes that is 7 visits to the Iowa Clinic in the last 3 weeks - I can finally fax in my medical clearance forms to the government.  So is the government really that particular?  Well, yes, but really, the Iowa Clinic is just that incompetent.  My first visit I brought the paperwork in with me and explained that every test had to be performed and every blank filled out and apparently even though the doctor is considered capable of assessing my health, she is not capable of reading and filling out forms.   First they called me back for a second urinalysis because the first one didn't come out right (even though this was not actually something the government asked for), then they called me back for a second blood draw because they forgot a test, then when Joey went to pick up the paperwork half the blanks were still not filled in and the doctor had written in the margins about my urinalysis (again, even though this information was not requested by the government).  So yesterday I went in for my third blood draw (and we all know how much I love needles) and today they finally had the paperwork completed.  R -EE - diculous.  According to one of the books we bought, Realities of Foreign Service Life, this process is tame compared to the process for medical clearance when leaving some third-world countries.  They call it a "shit kit."  Oh the ways my life is going to change...

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