Wednesday, October 23, 2019

The Perils of Packing




By Kate Hamilton from A Legacy of Murder by Connie Berry


Pardon the mess! You've caught me packing for my flight to England tomorrow, and I'm in a bit of a state. It's a direct flight, thank goodness, from Cleveland to London Heathrow. From there, I'll drive the hundred miles or so to Suffolk, where my daughter, Christine, is interning at Finchley Hall, a stately home in the village of Long Barston. I've rented an automatic. Staying on the wrong side of the road will be enough of a challenge without worrying about shifting with my left hand as well. 
But back to packing. I'll be spending most of my time with Christine, so jeans, sweaters, and boots are called for—plus my puffy down jacket. Even if the climate in England is considerably more temperate than northern Ohio, it is December. I also plan to do a little shopping while I'm in the UK. Antiques at the Falls, my shop in Jackson Falls, Ohio, needs new stock, and British antiques are always popular in the States—especially around the holidays. No special clothes needed for that either, of course, but I will be spending time with Tom Mallory, the detective inspector I met last October in Scotland—at least I hope so. He never knows when he'll be called out on a case. I imagine us taking long walks in the countryside and stopping for candlelit dinners at wonderful village pubs. I'll pack a few pairs of skinny jeans for that—plus the cherry-red cashmere sweater Tom liked so much in Scotland. I will need a few dressier outfits, though.

Christine tells me Lady Barbara Finchley-fforde has invited me to attend a formal welcome dinner for the new interns. I can't wait to see Finchley Hall—and maybe catch a glimpse of some of its famous Anglo-Saxon treasures. 

So far, so good.

But then there's Tom's mother, Liz—the one who doesn't like Americans. I can hardly avoid meeting her, can I? Tom tells me she's planning a dinner, too—so we can "get to know each other." He's so sure I'll win her over with my sparkling personality. Touching. Or na├»ve. The problem is what to wear. What if Liz shows up in an elegant dress and I arrive in slacks? Or, worse, what if I appear overdressed? She'll think I'm trying too hard. That I refute—I'm not trying at all. I do like Tom—a lot, if I'm honest—but how could an intercontinental relationship ever work? His job and his family are in England. Mine are in Ohio. Besides, it was murder that drew us together in Scotland. The thrill of an investigation. A hint of danger. That's not likely to happen again, is it? 

Hey, thanks for letting me vent. Now if I can just zip up this suitcase. 



Before you go, I have two questions for you: Where is your very favorite place in the world to travel? What is one essential item you never leave home without?






A Legacy of Murder, book 2 in Connie Berry's Kate Hamilton Mysteries is available in hardback and e-book. Book 1, A Dream of Death, is available in hardback, e-book, audio. 
  








Visit Connie Berry at her website and connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest


19 comments:

  1. Good luck with that packing, Kate, and have a wonderful visit with your daughter. And let us know how the "get to know each other" dinner with Liz goes. Talk about pressure! That's the kind of pressure you need to shut your suitcase.

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  2. Nice to e-meet you, Janet. And thanks for the good wishes! I have a feeling I'll need them.

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  3. Once upon a time, I would have said the Ozark Mountains. However, since we took the plunge and moved there 3 years ago, I get to see my favorite place all the time now. :) We do love going to the nations parks to explore new sights and see the critters that live there. This year we hit Yellowstone, Grand Tetons, Glacier, Badlands and Mt Rushmore. Next year hoping to hit all those in Utah.

    One thing I've learned to put top of my list is power cords. Seems there are never enough outlets in room for phone chargers, computers and to charge camera batteries. Sure makes life a lot easier to not have to spend all night doing one at a time or sitting in the dark with no TV to do the charging. :)
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

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  4. Power cords! Genius. The Ozarks are amazing. We've never visited the national parks. I'm not sure I can live long enough to see all the places on my travel wish list.

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  5. Good luck. I like Moldova and I enjoy clean clothes

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    1. Moldova? Another place to visit! And definitely clean clothes. Thx for stopping by to say hello!

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  6. Hi Kate! I love the British Isles, and London is one of my favorite cities to visit. I can't leave home without my phone and iPad chargers. I hope you have fun at the interns' dinner and good luck with yours and Tom's dinner with Liz!

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    1. Hi Celia! You know I love the British Isles too. After my disaster in Scotland last time, I've packed my phone charger in my carry-on. Thanks for the good wishes!

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  7. I loved visiting Hawaii, and I can't leave home without... EVERYTHING! I was thinking toothbrush, but then I remembered sunscreen, and then I saw Celia's post about the phone--can't leave home without that. Maybe you should read all these comments before you leave your house...or not. ;)

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    1. Oh, Gayle! I'm trying hard to pack light, but it's not easy. Toothbrush, check. Sunscreen, shouldn't need that in December. Hawaii is on my bucket list!

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  8. Only place I've been so far is Germany. I had to pack light and live out of one suitcase for 3 weeks so it's just the essentials for me.

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  9. Wow, I'm impressed, Alicia! I went to school in Germany, so it's one of my favorite places to visit. Thanks for stopping by!

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  10. I have only been in Canada when my ex and I went to our friends' wedding in Nova Scotia. That is some beautiful country! When I travel, I never forget to have extra undies in carry-all along with cash. One time I landed in New Orleans and my suitcase was on it's way to New York. It took two days for me to get my suitcase back (I know, I was extremely lucky!) Thank goodness I had cash. The hotel bus driver took me to a mall so I could get extra everything!
    teddi1961(at)arcemont(dot)com

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    1. Hi, Teddi! Losing luggage is definitely a pain. Hope you got some reimbursement. We are in Quebec right now, staying at the fabulous country inn featured in one of Louise Penny's books. Some day I'll get to Nova Scotia!

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  11. I don't have one set place that I love to travel to. I just love to travel and see new places. My hubby & I returned last week from visiting Paris for the second time. I don't leave home without my portable chargers for my kindle and iPad. Of course they are a must pack also.

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    1. Ooo, Paris! I must get back there. You're right about the chargers. But right now I'm fighting with gmail, trying to convince them that I'm not a hacker signing in from Canada. Thanks for stopping by!

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  12. Sorry, just saw this. I start packing a month before a trip. I make a list two months before. Where do I love to travel to? NY and NOLA, most of all. Congrats on the book, Connie! lOVED the first one.

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    1. I know you love NOLA! And we are the lucky ones who get to read Maggie's adventures there. Thanks for the good wishes, and hope to see you in Dallas?

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  13. I just got back to WNY from a trip to Poland. It was a struggle bringing everything back-and I didn't do as much shopping as I wanted! I had an amazing time, but that was my trip of a lifetime and I don't plan on traveling anywhere other than days trips or 1 night from now on. I won't leave on a trip without my stuffed raccoon, Rob! (and, of course, the book I'm currently reading and my medications.)

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