a little over a week from now, we'll be back in britain for the first time in a long time. i've been dancing like an overstimulated terrier in anticipation of it; oxford in particular is so dear to me that i think of the intervening years, not the six months and change i lived there or the weeks i've returned, as time spent abroad. the whole trip, planned lauren-style in longhand on the backs of dogeared flyers and magazine programs and collected in a mead folder with a robot on the front, will be wonderful: we're flying out to london, where we'll cheer for my old friend eric as he marries an excellent englishwoman (nicola's in publishing and the reception is at stationers' hall, so they're printing up menus which will look like real newspapers with characteristic headlines - IMMIGRANTS STEALING OUR MOST ELIGIBLE WOMEN! [the daily mail], TRANSATLANTIC MERGER CLOSES [the financial times], and so on), then we're going up to oxford, where we'll stash our stuff in one of the eight-hundred-year-old student rooms at magdalen (which are just across the high street from where we were married) and gallop around town for a week. we'll be back down in london for an afternoon, probably, but we'll spend most of our time visiting beloved sandwiches, reacquainting ourselves with ahmed and pitted tables of note, and disappearing around corners.