With time galloping towards August 15, my departure date for the UK, I'm focussed on shrinking my life down to a few sturdy boxes. Apart from my books, lecture note files, contact details for the folks I need to interview for my next book, there are a few non-Media type items I wish to cart across the Atlantic. So what would you include?
I'm taking (not "bringing"--I can't stand it when people use the word "bringing" when they mean "taking") a queen-size down comforter (God knows I will need it for those biting British nights), two down pillows, two sheet-size fluffy terry towels with matching hand towels (yes, I know that basic linens will be provided in my furnished pad, but I simply can't tolerate the idea of using someone else's towels for a whole year--besides, I have become so spoiled by the giant ones we use at home that anything short of colossal seems like a handkerchief to me). Oh and my plastic lined terry towel shower cap.
I'm also taking my trusty Italian Moka (gifted to me by my Italian professor friend Annalisa from the University of Padua during my last visit to her place in Vicenza), my hinged tea infuser, and a few kitchen odds and ends--like a small whisk and a balloon whisk, a wooden lemon reamer, my microplane (for making all those salad dressings for every salad I will make from scratch), ice-cream scoop, pizza wheel, set of knives (Chef's, serrated, paring), a load of small Tupperware containers, large tray (so food can travel from the kitchen to other parts of my home), an electric hand blender (yes, I will carry an adapter) for all those soups on which I intend to live. I might not be Nigella Lawson but I can't imagine resisting the urge to putz around the kitchen for a whole year. Plus, I'll want to try out those essentially English ingredients: golden syrup and treacle, Cumberland sausages and chipolatas, lemon curd and potted shrimp and Wensleydale cheese. Yummy! Just thinking of all these goodies gets me salivating. Above left is a picture I took in March this year of the chocolate truffles on sale at the famous Borough Market where I made a meal of the freebies that were being passed out as samples.
My Tanita weighing scale is near at hand. Each time I add another item to the box, I weigh it-- not just with shipping expense in mind but my ability to handle these loads. I will need to transport them from NYU's campus in Bloomsbury to my flat--wheverever that will be located (still a mystery at this point). While books weigh tons and Llew will be there to lend a hand with the hauling and the lugging, I don't want to kill myself in the quest for comfort. So... I'm packing light. Despite my determination to take the move in manageable stages, I am exhausted at day's end and this interminable heat is hardly helping.