South Park Self

skipping over the ocean like a stone

The cats hate it when anyone goes away - as soon as the suitcase comes down from the top of the cupboard, they get all clingy and anxious. I've done this morning's last-minute stuff at the computer with Hobbit curled up uncomfortably in the small of my back, crammed between me and the chair. Golux has a different approach:

Note the worried expression. I think she fondly imagines that if she keeps very quiet and lies right in the middle of the piles of clothes I'm packing, I'll accidentally pack her and she can come along. Fortunately I'm wise to this. It would be more of a problem with Todal, who actually camoflages a lot more effectively among the insane amounts of black I seem to wear.

So, I'm heading off in an hour or so to the airport, for the first leg of this slightly insane Cape Town/Joburg/Sydney/Brisbane/Melbourne/Sydney/Joburg/Cape Town trip. Ten days, four universities. Also, just because I can, Strauss's Cappriccio at the Sydney Opera House. I confidently expect this trip to be at the very least interesting, and hopefully also productive, but at this precise moment I'm fighting off my inevitable hermit-crab response of "aargh don't wanna go want my comfortable bed and kitties meep!" Dragged kicking and screaming into intercontinental travel, that's me. And, occasionally, into leaving the house at all.

Please spare a moment to toss a prayer towards the abrupt and arbitrary Chilean volcano gods, whose cloud of ash is currently preventing air travel between Australia and New Zealand, but mercifully not between South Africa and Australia or within the continent. Hopefully someone will toss the requisite number of virgins into the crater and this state of things will prevail.

Also, am declaring a moratorium on bad Australian jokes and accents either in the comments, or when I return. The first person to call me "sheila" gets a punch up the conk.
thank you! I am, of course, completely conscious of the irony that you're the Australian person I'd be most likely to visit when visiting Australia, and you've just fled to Europe with impeccable timing. I blame the volcano gods, personally.
If you are taking lots of black you will fit right-in, in Melbourne :-)
Brisbane may be warm...I have a friend there who laments the lack of opportunity to display his jacket collection.
Poor kitties!
My Possum gets all frantic when the suitcases come out. Often we'll open a suitcase on the bed and return to find it full of cats. Look how neatly we pack, they say. Take up hardly any space at all.

Good luck in the penal colonies. Throw a shrimp on the barbie and all.
Waltzing Matilda
My mother's dog does that trick too; when she sees an empty suitcase she curls up in it, then looks at me with big sad eyes as if it would be an injustice to not take her along.

Enjoy Sydders!