Well... here I am again! So, I just checked, and I've blogged just 5 times in the last 21 months. That's pathetic. And there's just no way to get caught up in any clever manner, so I'm going to jump back in with an old crowd-pleaser. It's the first installment of Over the Pond, volume 8. (If you'd like to read any of the back issues, you can get them on the sidebar.) Seriously, it's been so long that I can't remember how to do this.
So, if you've followed previous seasons of OTP, you'll know it means that I'm back in Durham to work on my dissertation. It's my first trip since September 2009, which I apparently never got around to blogging. Chalk it up to the fact that I was 27 weeks pregnant and trying to finish my paper on Augustine. Anyway, now that our son Roman (and that's a whole other set of posts) is 15 months old, it seemed like a good time to resume the journey towards the PhD. In a way, it feels like I was just here. The familiarity of arriving into London Heathrow, making my way through Passport Control and across London to King's Cross and onto the train to Durham. This trip was more draining than I remember (although it could be that I was just more exhausted upon departure. Hey, with 2 little kids it's possible.) Since I left during the kids' spring break, I wanted to spend as much time with them as possible, so I didn't depart until 7:30 Thursday night. A couple of hours and 2 glasses of pinot later, and we departed for London at 11pm. I had good intentions of either studying or sleeping, but -- like I always seem to do -- I spent much of the flight reading a wonderful new novel that I'd saved just for the trip. If you are in search of a good read, I highly recommend Never Let Me Go.
The trip through London was pleasantly uneventful, and I grabbed my favorite, favorite English sandwich, a warm brie-bacon-cranberry-spinach baguette. This is one of my favorite things about my trips. After phoning my friend Maeve, I hopped a train for Durham, which would have been far more pleasant if I'd had a seat anywhere but the hot, hot vestibule. After a quick doze and a a game of train bingo with a British 8 yr old, I reached Durham just in time for a small dinner party at my friend Maeve's flat, where I'll be staying this week. It was a bit of a challenge staying up after the trip, but a fabulous meal and a few glasses of shiraz were just what the doctor ordered. So the library's about to close, and I'm headed to Evensong at the Cathedral, to the Market Tavern for some pub grub, then back to Maeve's to write. But I promise -- I will be back tomorrow. With pictures.