Being an annoying test-taker is a pretty heavy burden. I spent over two hours talking to myself, making hand gestures, reasoning my way through the final exam. Sure, I whispered, but I had to be loud enough to hear myself, and I’m pretty sure other people could hear me, because only seven other people were in the classroom. I apologize for that, and if you were focused enough so that you could tune me out, I’m grateful to and glad for you.
I just remembered to take my passport from its special place and put it with my luggage. Forgetting that would have been unfortunate.
A 14 hour, 45-minute flight awaits me, but prior to that, I get to sit around at LAX for nine hours, so I HAVE LOTS OF FREE TIME! Yay for reading! Also, I WON’T BE IN PROVO! That’s the first and foremost of the positive things to count, right?
As far as fiction goes, I’m going to bring Sara Hina’s Plum Blossoms in Paris. It’s the book I won for that flash fiction contest I entered a few weeks ago. The author seems pretty nice, I mean, I follow her on Twitter. Plus, she’s said some very nice things about my writing, and of course you can see into a person’s soul by the criticisms she gives.
Olive Ann Burns’s Cold Sassy Tree will also accompany me. I figure reading something in a colloquial voice, no matter what part of the world it represents, will prepare me for the thick, heavy accent about to bombard me. Huh, mate? Shrimp on the wha? I’m sorry, but my name isn’t Sheila. That’s ace, let’s have some more of that.
Nonfiction begs of Annie Dillard’s For the Time Being. Flying over the vast Pacific is perfect for being transcendental, lofty-minded, cerebral, spiritual, which is also why I’m bringing the Book of Mormon. I haven’t read this particular volume of Annie’s, but the Book of Mormon I’ve read multiple times.
I’m taking my trusty Moleskine along with a fresh, clean memo pad. I have a lot of sorting and thinking to do.
My iPod will supply me with a lot of music. I recently compiled playlists for some friends, and those have been great fun to listen to.
In-flight entertainment will probably preserve my sanity.
Talking to strangers should be a fun activity. I’m thinking of starting a conga line down the aisles and around the cabin. And I wonder if I’ll run into any French speakers.
I hope to be able to sleep during typical sleeping hours on the plane. It’s crazy to go to sleep Thursday night and wake up Saturday morning.
I’m going to miss all of you. I’ll be thinking of you while quite possibly falling in love with a foreign country. I’ll be conveying your hugs and happy thoughts to Becky, and maybe I’ll be wishing you were with me, just for the extra company, or just like old times.
Blogging might be a possibility. I’m sure I’ll have at least a few interesting photos to post.
Y’all be good. I don’t want to hear about no misbehavin’.