Well, I’ve no legitimate explanation how in two and a half months I’ve not managed to eke out a final recap of my time in Europe (entire countries [Belgium], glossed over! multiple meals left unmentioned!) nor even a final recap of my last days in Paris. Would you be soothed if I revealed said last days were fraught with miserable illness and cancelled flights?  If the journey home was closely akin to a 30-some hour Labor Day bataan death march?  It definitely veered into the ludricously amusing how Everything Went Wrong, and must indeed be recounted at some point, along with the remaining photos of quaint cobbled-and-canalled European scenery and –let us never forget– additional pics of foodstuffs.  Herring sandwich, anyone?

Nevertheless! A new chapter begins today, as the long awaited journey to the land of the Lord of the Rings commences. I am beginning to suspect travel would feel MUCH easier if I was just able to sleep on any given pre-departure night, arg. But we will pump up full of coffee and carry on. Speaking of ‘carry on’, to my amazement I am doing really well meeting my luggage weight requirements despite having to schlep so much electronica with me to sustain remote work-from-the-minivan. We shall see how I fare when I start adding the last bits and pieces of toiletries and suchlike. The super-cool little luggage scale I purchased is proving invaluable – though ironically, itself weighs a TON. And unfortunately it must come along for the ride so I can stay under my limits on the way back, too.

My only hesitation is, because my work implements are so critical, I cannot risk their delay or loss. Therefore, am having to gamble on the kindness of fate that my checked luggage will actually arrive with me – and all of the clothes, coats, and other assorted personal supplies therein. Wish me luck!