How to uphold the morale when packing suitcases:
On Friday I’ll fly to Toronto, where I will teach a six-week, 72-hour seminar on “The Rise of the Novel” to a bunch of unfortunate students at York University. These past few days … uhm … weeks I’ve been a bit of a nervous wreck, whereas today I’m surprisingly calm and collected while packing my suitcase. But don’t worry: packing my suitcase always reduces me to tears at the end of the day.
At the moment, I’m busy carrying clothes to our downstairs flat, where I spread them out in neat piles on the empty bed. Said piles are alarmingly large, and what’s even more alarming, they’ve joined company with equally alarming amounts of tea, chocolates, shoes and VIBs (= very important books). And all of these I need to stuff into one suitcase.
Following the advice of my dear friend Kathleen Givens, I’ve put aside a change of underwear, socks and a nightshirt to be put into the cabin luggage in case my suitcase ends up in China.