Whenever I try to plan for my life, I wind up focusing on one thing - money (or the lack thereof). I focus, and I worry, and I tend convince myself that I can't afford to do anything but stay home while the rest of the world goes by.

But sometimes, I manage to find the one excuse that will let me go ahead with my plans anyway.

Traveling to Vancouver? Not a chance... but there's going to be a Supernatural convention in the city with the boys signed on the guest list and photo ops? It'll be worth it, and you'll have time enough to see the sites as well.

Violin lessons? At your age? ...well, we still have the violin from when my kid sister was enrolled in that one school. Besides, I don't hold any plans to become a virtuoso; I just want to be good enough to play what I like.

London? Not in this lifetime... but there's a production of Much Ado About Nothing - my favorite Shakespeare play - with an actor I've heard as a good Benedict and an actress I've long suspected would be an excellent Beatrice cast in those roles, and my birthday is coming up....

Long story short (too late), I fly out tomorrow. Afternoon trip to Chicago, overnight to Heathrow; reservation set at the Astor Museum Hostel and my theatre ticket will be at the box office on Monday night. Tuesday morning sees me flying to Houston, then back here around 4 that afternoon.

I've been working on this since March, and the panic's still in force. Moreso with the final packing - do I have enough room in this case? Where'd the guide book get to? Is this outfit going to work for Monday, or should I just switch it for another? Passport's in my jacket pocket, right? Right. Netbook and camera charged? Adapter in the netbook case? Do I have enough cash on hand/in my account to do anything once I get there?!?

My luck, I'll be so wound up I won't sleep a wink tonight. (Which is what happened during the Vancouver trip; couldn't sleep on the flights either, ran around the city for a couple of hours before checking in at the hotel, got to my room, set the alarm for a short nap - and woke up the next morning, as I hadn't turned the alarm on. Wound up the best I'd ever done setting myself on a normal day-night pattern.)

Anyway, I'll try to update while I'm out there. No promises, though.


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Aleyn Howlett
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