If I had world enough and time, I would take the book London Lore: The Legends and Traditions of the World's Most Vibrant City (by Steve Roud) into a room with me, my fuzzy red throw blanket, and some coffee and bon-bons, and never come out. And I'd like to do this during a month like we're currently having: way too much snow and ridiculously cold.*
Roud shares tidbits of history and legend from every nook and cranny in London--and I do mean every one. It's a thick book, with dense printing, organized so that each chapter covers a different borough and is further subdivided according to its stories, with headings like "Cock Lane, Smithfield." I read a bit of the first chapter ("Cock Lane is an inconspicuous, narrow thoroughfare, off Giltspur Street, Smithfield, which suddenly acquired international fame in 1762 when a house in the road became the scene of one of the best-known hauntings in London's history..."), but the sad fact of the matter is that I'm not going to have time to read the whole thing, and truthfully, it just reminds me I'm not IN London and therefore makes me sad.
But I have a plan! Not to put too much pressure on CRjr or anything, but I have this dream that during college he'll study abroad for a year--at Oxford! And while he does Mr. CR and I will move to London for six months, to be able to see him once in a while and to take an extended look around ourselves!! And then I can take this book along and have time to explore with it. Right? It'll totally happen, right?**
*Cold is one thing, but next week our forecasted highs are set to be several degrees below the normal LOWS for this time of year. And we've got so much snow (yes, yes, I know, still nothing compared to what the East coast has been getting this winter) that backing blindly out of our driveway between the monster drifts/snow piles on each side has become a suicide mission.
**I know it'll never happen. For one thing CRjr probably won't be able to afford college anywhere (have you seen how fast tuition is going up these days?), much less Oxford, and for another, he may grow up to find someplace like, say, France, more interesting than Great Britain.*** But I can still dream.
***This is the sort of thing I worry about, to keep myself from worrying about his health and peer pressure and other mundane crap like that.