"A commonplace book is what a provident poet cannot subsist without, for this proverbial reason, that “great wits have short memories:” and whereas, on the other hand, poets, being liars by profession, ought to have good memories; to reconcile these, a book of this sort, is in the nature of a supplemental memory, or a record of what occurs remarkable in every day’s reading or conversation." - Jonathan Swift, "A Letter of Advice to a Young Poet"

Friday, July 13, 2012

10 Things I Like About This Trip

Here I am with another list. Since I've been feeling kind of nervous about my upcoming trip, I thought I'd make a little list of things I'm looking forward to.

1. Great theater. I just read today about a new season of plays being put on by the Michael Grandage Company in London, which include a Martin McDonagh play ("Cripple of Inishmaan") starring Daniel Radcliffe and a new play about Alice Liddell Hargreaves and Peter Llewelyn Davies starring Judi Dench and Ben Wishaw, about which my feelings can be summed up by alksjdfldkjfpsodiflk, more or less. In addition to that, I've already got tickets to see some amazing shows in Oxford, London, and Edinburgh.

2. Fish & chips. I like them a lot.

3. Taking pictures. It's been a while since I really played around with a camera, but I'm sure I'll have mine out a lot over the next few months.

4. Living out of a suitcase. This may sound a bit odd, but I'm actually looking forward to it because I've spent the summer surrounded by my collected stuff, as I said in my last post, and I'm very ready to live a lean life now. I keep paring down my packing list, trying to pack very light, or as light as I can for a year-long trip.

5. Reading. I've done a fair bit of reading this summer, given my usual (very slow) rate, but in the last few weeks I've fallen off a bit. I've also realized how much fun it is to read in a group, and so I'm very much looking forward to being in literature classes again.

6. Making new friends. Don't get me wrong, I do love my old friends, very dearly indeed. But there's a particular joy in making new friends, no matter who they are. I believe it's Mary Crawford in Mansfield Park (correct me if I'm wrong) who bemoans the particular pain of parting with new acquaintances because there is still so much to know about them and learn from them. I find there's a particular pleasure that's the flip side of that pain. And what better way to find that than to move somewhere I've never been and where I know no one!

7. Having lots to write about on this blog. I do love blogging, but sometimes it feels like I'm scrambling for interesting thoughts. In that vein, I also find my creative mind is very fertile while traveling, so I'm looking forward to indulging that part of myself and taking some time to write.

8. Traveling to Germany for the first time. After studying German language and literature for five years, I'm very excited to actually go there and try out my chops. To add to the fun, I'm going there to attend a wedding, which will be the second wedding I've ever been to, and the first where I wasn't employed in some capacity. I also know no one else who will be attending except my sister, who I'm going with (I've never met the bride or the groom :)), so I have no expectations except good ones.

9. Wearing my winter clothes again. San Francisco summer notwithstanding, I've been living in shorts for a while now, and while I'll miss it very much indeed, I'm also looking forward to pulling on my beautiful winter coat again.

10. Getting to the other side of the scary moment of transition and sinking into the fun and wonder of the actual trip.

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