Oh, England, my lionheart...

This has been one of the most hectic weeks in recent memory as I prepare to leave tomorrow for England. For some reason, I seem to be having some OCD panic over what to pack and not to pack. It's like I've never been out of the country before. I keep reminding myself that there will be laundry facilities at Oxford and shops to buy toothpaste and deodorant if I run out. I'm also relieved that one of my friends will be apartment sitting while I'm away, making sure Chez Collin is secure.

I'll spend the first week at Worcester College at Oxford University guest lecturing to the Georgia Tech study abroad students on social media and literature. I'm staying with BFF's Karen and Colin in an old stone cottage just across from the campus. Although I've been to the UK a dozen times in the last 15 years, I've never visited Oxford, so I'll be playing tourist, too.

After Oxford, I'll be heading to Cardiff for a poetry reading with Karen, Ivy Alvarez and Mab Jones at The Promised Land, a pub in the city center. We're staying at The Big Sleep, a boutique hotel owned by John Malkovich. It would be a trip if he was there. The day we read is also the final match of the World Cup, so we'll be holed up in a pub watching with the masses.

I'll be visiting friends in London the second week, going down to Rochester to stay a night with BFF's Krys and Peter and then it's on to Paris, where I plan to finish (or at least get very close to finishing) the first draft of the Conquering Venus sequel. I haven't had much time to write in the run-up to my departure, so I'm a bit behind schedule. Still, being in Paris while writing about Paris should give the book an extra bit of dimension. The picture above is Saint Martin Canal, a short walk from my hotel and I'm hoping the weather is good so I can sit along the canal in this beautiful park and write. If it's raining, I'll head over to Pompidou Center for free wi-fi, great views of the city and excellent people watching.

Camera is already packed so expect lots of photos here and at Facebook. More soon!


Joy B said…
It's so exciting! Soon you'll be sitting on the plane and what's packed is packed and the adventure has begun. I'll be thinking about you...and living vicariously through you!
Radish King said…

Jeannine said…
Sounds like so much fun! Keep us posted and say hi to Ivy for me!
christine said…
Your trip sounds amazing! I didn't know you've been to the UK so many times. I'd love to meet Ivy Alvarez. I read her book, Mortal, last summer, and she chose one of my poems as guest editor of Cordite Review. That made me happy.

The best part will be writing in Paris. Wow!
January said…
I am so, so happy for you, Collin! Can't wait to see pictures. You deserve this. Have a wonderful time! I'm living vicariously through you so make sure you share all the details!


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