Saturday 31 December 2011

Last minute packing

I love the details of planning and packing for a trip. This time it's different than past trips, because I'm traveling alone and leaving my family for a month. So I'm not only worried about what bag to bring, what shoes (and how I can limit myself to two pairs), where I'll stay, etc; I'm also worried about the high school exams my son has to study for while I'm gone and I'm worried about my son and husband worrying about me. Yes, I'm worrying in advance. That's my nature.

Meanwhile, to packing. I spent a lot of time considering what kind of bag to bring to India. I settled on a small carry-on type with wheels and backpack straps. I had pared my belongings down to that single bag, as well as a small shoulder bag for my netbook and journal and I was fairly pleased with myself. Then I found out I had to interrupt my trip to go to London to promote Shelter. Not that I'm complaining. But I had to re-think my packing. Now, I have one carry-on and one bag to check with the London clothes: boots, raincoat, etc.

I head first to Bangalore, where I will arrive at one a.m. and expect to find a driver to meet me with my name on a sign. (I've always wanted to land in a foreign country to find someone waiting with my name on a sign). I'll spend a week and a half at a rural retreat about 30 km north of Bangalore. Just got an update saying that it will be "chilly": 27 C in the daytime (!) but around 14 C at night, which is sort of chilly. Also, we're supposed to check our sheets and shoes for scorpions.

I'm all vaccinated up with most everything going, so I feel like Teflon woman. Scorpions, ha! Bring em on.

Friday 9 December 2011

The wonder voyage

I named this blog after the wonder voyage of Saint Brendan of Ireland, a monk who set forth on a sea pilgrimage in a curragh, a hide canoe, in 565 AD. The account of his fantastic sea adventures is a little like an Irish Thousand and One Nights. I'm not undertaking a sea voyage; I'm heading to India, to a small community outside of Bangalore. And as I'm traveling in India, I'll be researching and writing a novel. The wonder of those adventures will be recorded here.