If I had a hammer…

…an enchanted one, made of uru-metal, forged in the heart of a dying star, I’d use it to fly (or literally throw myself) to the UK tomorrow. But since I don’t have one of those, and there’s no Rainbow Bridge across the Atlantic, I have to settle for United Airlines.

In twenty-four hours, I’ll have the first of tomorrow’s four flights complete. (I like early, but the wake-up time for the first flight out of Casper is ludicrous.)

I’m off to Ireland and the UK for two weeks, one of which will be spent doing class prep (for future potential study abroad/travel courses), and the other will be spent actually teaching in Londinium. (Yes, I am sort of ridiculously amused by using the earlier historical names for places. We’ll be spending a day in Yorvik, too. Have to show some love for the Danes, as well.)

I’m going to see the Beowulf manuscript.

I have scouted its location in the British Library. I have packed a handkerchief.

Also (all forces willing), I’ll get to see some friends I haven’t seen in years, which makes me so happy.

Carry-on, my wayward son…

And all of this fits (more or less) neatly into my one personal item, and the trip is being done with a carry-on only. I’m confining myself to one journal, but I am sneaking along a number of pens. There are currently six, though I might pare that down by two. (The Signos are fine and all, but I’m not in love, and I likely won’t use the green and the blue that often, since I’m taking the Prera and some blue-black cartridges.)

I’m also borrowing the iPad you see in the back of the photo. It’s currently loaded with George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones because I haven’t read any of that series yet and I probably ought to, as it, with the advent of the new television series, may become another one of those popular touchstones with my students. (Also, Sean Bean is in the series. So I’ll watch it at some point.) I will try not to be a fantasy snob at it.

I’ve also taken advantage of some of the free e-editions: Sherlock Holmes, Frankenstein, Treasure Island, Passage to India. Yes, yes, I am aware that I am a perfectly shoddy English major with no right to my degrees for having those books on a to-read and not on a have-read list. But, honestly, for someone who loves Old English so much, all of these novels are frankly new-fangled. They’ve not been out for a full two hundred years. So no spoilers, folks. No spoilers.

May manage an update or two as I go, but I’m not certain. Haven’t attempted anything half so complex on the iPad, with which I have only a very shaky peace.

Book recommendations left for when I get back (when I’ll have some proper “summer”) would be ever-so-much appreciated.

3 thoughts on “If I had a hammer…

  1. I admire your ability to pack light. The notion of traveling with only a purse and a carry-on is SO appealing to me, but I can't even get close to that when we tool up 81 to see the 'Ents. *sigh*

    Also: Sherlock Holmes, yay. Have you read The Hound of the Baskervilles? I really like that one. Avoid “The Five Orange Pips.” It's not bad, exactly, but it's sort of “Yes. So?” Not a good starting place if you're hoping to get all cozy with Holmes long-term. Treasure Island is so much fun. And you already heard my dork-squee about Frankenstein.

    I started Game of Thrones last night. First twenty pages intrigue me, and do not make me want to just put the book down and go read Rings. So, so far, so good.

    Long comment is long. Luuuuuuuuuuunch.


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