Well, it’s official. We’re going to Europe.
It’s going to be quite a trip. We’re going to Sweden first, where we’ll stay with Mats and Sara and their family. Then we’ll be headed to the UK, where we’ll stay with Julie and Richard and their family.
The tickets are purchased. We learned a few things in that process. Our original plan was to go from Chicago to Stockholm to London and back to Chicago. This, it turns out, is not what the airlines want you to do. Or maybe it is, because it’s the most expensive option. Kim did the research and figured out that by adding another flight – making one round-trip from Chicago to Stockholm and back and a second round-trip from Stockholm to London and back – we could save about a quarter of the price of the whole trip. More flights, less money. No wonder the airlines are going broke.
The plans are made. Or at least they’re as made as we’re likely to make them. There’s a delicate balance to be struck between planning enough things to do so you don’t end up just hanging out staring at walls – which we could do at home for considerably less trouble – and not planning so much that you need a vacation when you get back. It’s a trick.
We’ve even got a house-sitter all arranged. The bunnies and cats will not starve in our absence, and we don’t have to figure out how to work the light timers again, the way we do every time we go away. So if you were planning to come by and steal our stuff while we were gone, a) think again, and b) you need to aim a little higher in life anyway. Go steal from someone with nicer stuff. Or better yet, go get your own stuff, so you don’t have to worry about large men in blue uniforms taking you away to a large grey building filled with even larger men named Bubba who would spend the next several years making you their pet and bartering you for cigarettes.
Because seriously, how many cigarettes do you think you’re worth?
We’re in the process of cleaning the house now, so that it looks nice for the house-sitter. Because you can live quite comfortably with your own disaster area, but inflicting it on someone else is sort of rude. It’s the same impulse that makes people do all those long-delayed home repair projects just before they move out, though by the time you finish it’s kind of a shame to sell the place.
So beginning tomorrow there will be a rather rapid decline in the amount of posting here.
But fear not, intrepid readers! I shall return, with stories and photographs, tales of derring do and cunning, and not a few instances of culture shock.
It’ll be worth the wait.