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Readers,

My flight to London is tonight, and right now, mid-afternoon in Minneapolis, I’m feeling restless. I’m 98 percent packed and am asking myself what I could have possibly forgotten to bring or plan for. This keeps my mind busy but not satisfied.

Carrying my well-thumbed copy of the classic street finder, London A to Z.

Carrying my well-thumbed copy of the classic street finder, London A to Z.

My small, sturdy bag is comfortably full. It will weigh about 30 pounds when entirely packed–not so much that I can’t hoist it onto trains and up flights of steps on my way from Heathrow to the flat where I’m staying.

I know there will be this magical moment when I move from being preoccupied with logistics to anticipating all those sights and sounds I imagined with such excitement when I registered for Tailoring with Savile Row Tailors. Why can’t I just start feeling that excitement now?

On the South Bank of the Thames, not far from the London Bridge station, is where I will attend Tailoring with Savile Row Tailors.

On the South Bank of the Thames, not far from the London Bridge station, is where I will attend Tailoring with Savile Row Tailors.

I can and have traveled by myself, but it’s not my ideal mode. I remember seventeen years ago when Jack and I were living in Istanbul on his first sabbatical, and one of his colleagues traveling to a conference in Budapest let me tag along and share her hotel room. I managed getting around Budapest for six days okay (knowing only how to say one word in Hungarian: “Thank you.”).

Having worked as a baker I loved the coffeehouses and pastries. I toured the opera house and the national art museum. I walked a lot, running into a group of American expats who invited me to join them for lunch at, I think, the Indonesian embassy. Delicious.

But there was a moment when I was looking at a painting at one of the great museums and thinking, “I wish I had someone here to say ‘Wow!’ to.”

There it is: the Fashion and Textile Museum, where I start my class on January 14.

There it is: the Fashion and Textile Museum, where I start my class on January 14.

Part of enjoying travel, to me, is having someone to say “Wow!” to. Unfortunately, I couldn’t talk Jack into joining me. Just when my plane touches down at Heathrow he’ll be arriving at his office and planning his classes for the new semester. Darn.

However, I can still say “Wow!” long-distance. And this will be my first time saying “Wow” to you, readers, from my favorite city.

I have been wanting to tell you about the museum shows, vintage markets, and shops I’m planning to visit, not to mention covering the short course at the Fashion and Textile Museum that’s the focus of this trip. I haven’t wanted to promise anything I couldn’t deliver on. As my web guy knows, I don’t love the technical side of blogging. The laptop and camera will probably work just fine, though.

Either you will hear from me from London, or worst case, from Minneapolis after my return on January 29.

I think I’m going to have lots of “Wow”s to report.