Friday, May 07, 2010

The Day Before Leaving

... is always pretty bad. I realise I haven't written the essay questions for my students; my paper is too long and has no conclusion; I can't decide what combination of shoes and coats to pack for London and Berlin; suddenly there's an enormous pile of laundry to do; and there's no bread or milk in the house. I'm doing it all on my own, too, as P and J have gone off to Sri Lanka for a father-son-bonding-research-trip. Nor have I started my homework — i miei compiti — for tomorrow's Italian class, but I'm determined to go, as I'll miss the following one as well. Tomorrow, then, I'll wake up with a brilliant conclusion to my paper; then change the sheets and clean the house for the family members who will be here to minister to the cat and the fish (lucky we didn't go with the long-necked turtles and tree frogs that captured our hearts on the last visit to the aquarium) while we're away. I'll then nip into class, pick up my watch with its new battery, ride home, then call the taxi for the airport. But what will I read on the plane? Malory, Tennyson and Chaucer for the week's classes when I return. Or perhaps a novel...

I did the essay questions, but still have some reports to read and write while I'm away. Grr.

Right now I'm going to pack. Frankly, I'd be glad to hear the volcano has stopped travel again. But once I get going, I'll be okay, I suppose.

15 comments:

Jeffrey J. Cohen said...

Happy travels, Stephanie!

meli said...

It sounds like you'll be pretty booked up, but strangely enough I'll be in Berlin that weekend, thanks to Norway's abundance of public holidays in May (I get there on Thursday and leave on Monday). So let me know if you fancy a coffee or a weissbier or something! (No worries if you don't have time.) Berlin is one of my all-time favourite cities!

Stephanie Trigg said...

Meli, that would be wonderful! What a treat! I get there early Wednesday afternoon and proceedings don't start till Thursday afternoon. I would *love* to catch up! I'll be staying at the Harnackhaus near the Thielplatz station. I'll email you my phone no! Or we could just meet somewhere on Thursday morning, perhaps?

Stephanie Trigg said...

Actually, Meli, I only have a Leeds email address for you. Email me the best one to use? I hope we can meet up. Depends what time you arrive on Thursday: I'd have to be back at the hotel by 3.30; the next two days are packed with papers, though Friday and Saturday evenings are free at this stage. You don't want to come and hang out with the medievalists?

elsewhere said...

Shoes for travelling is always hard. A pair of boots that are comfortable enough to walk long distances in, yet good enough to wear to a restaurant maybe?

Stephanie Trigg said...

That would be ideal. I tend to be a bit more divided: heels for conferencing, and runners or hikers for the tourist walking business. And I've already committed the cardinal sin: have bought new boots which are comfy around the house, but which will probably be unwearable by the second day. Sigh.

ThirdCat said...

The day before leaving always sucks, and it always feels like you should be staying home, and then...the minute you're on the plane/train/boat...hurrah! New horizons.

And I'm always packing at midnight and hoping the first place I'm staying has a cheap washing machine.

Bon voyage!

Stephanie Trigg said...

Yes, yes and yes!!

Flight's at 3.30: I'm looking forward to not making any difficult decisions for a while.

caite said...

Hi Stephanie,

Are you giving a public talk in Berlin? I haven't been up to date with your blog...

As a current resident in Berlin, I would be interested in coming along :)

caite said...

Oh, and in case it's not too late...warm coats for Berlin! It's much colder than it should be right now!!

Stephanie Trigg said...

Thanks, Caite! Conference is on Chaucer's Troilus and Criseyde and Shakespeare's Troilus and Cressida; organised by the Free University:
Freie Universität Berlin | Institut für Englische Philologie
Habelschwerdter Allee 45 | 14195 Berlin

phone: 030-838 723 41 (Elisabeth)

Conference will be held at Harnackhaus, near Thielplatz station: program appears on my post below from Tuesday, APril 27.

See you there!

meli said...

I'll send you an email now...

re. the boots - as long as you don't do what Louise did last time I saw her in Leeds and wear them all the way on the plane you should be fine!

re. coats for berlin - how disappointing! i was really hoping it would be warmer than the unseasonably cold weather we've been having here. it even snowed last week!

Kerryn Goldsworthy said...

They are muttering about the volcano blowing again, so if you get really really lucky you'll get "stuck" in Europe and have nothing to do but shop -- my dear, quelle bore -- and a number of problems at home will solve themselves or of necessity get fixed by somebody else.

It's five to three in Melbourne so you'll be boarding/boarded by now. Safe trip, have fun. It'll be fabulous; I'm green with envy. xxx

caite said...

Sounds great :) How exciting!! Everything is happening that weekend in Berlin, I hope I can make it on the Saturday morning.

Yes, the weather is unseasonably cold :( my seedlings are not impressed.

Safe travels!

meli said...

i sent you an email directly after i wrote my last comment - let me know if it hasn't got through! (also, my leeds email address is actually alive for another month or two, so you could also try me there.) i hope you've made it safe and sound!