January 7th, 2010, 16:25:00
Day 6: Wroxton College, Wroxton, England, UK
Had a very opaque panel this morning about "The Transparent, the Translucent and the Opaque". It got overly philosophical and I had difficulty applying it to my own work, but it was somewhat helpful when it comes to literary analysis. After the panel, Kandy and I were going to hitch into Banbury with Jin and Lou, but Jin wasn't feeling well so Kandy and I ended up meeting with David Grand and Renee Steinke at the North Arms pub instead. Nick and Gary, the pub owners are really fantastic; even though they weren't technically open when we arrived, they lit a fire and let us warm up while the kitchen crew arrived.
The hospitality here is really a thing unto itself. Everyone and everything is unfailingly polite. The signage on the trains for example says, "Mind the gap", which is much less commanding than "Watch Your Step". Had an interesting conversation with Trevor about the policeman, who don't carry weapons, other than a truncheon. There seems to be a good deal of red tape and the police here have to be polite to the criminals/citizens. Lou, Jin's husband, watched an episode of a television show similar to the American show "Cops" and after pursuing some criminals in a chase, the cops let them off with a warning. Chases in the US, of course, end with resisting arrest charges at the very least and handcuffing and tazering at worst.
I was meant to have an individual meeting with David Grand in the afternoon, but he still has to plow through my now about 75 pages of novel before we speak, so instead, I headed back to the Abbey where I took a nap and read some of Neal Shusterman's new YA book "Everwild". After my nap, there was dinner and after dinner, Becky, Hilary, Jin, Lou, Rich, Eric(?) and I watched "Tropic Thunder" downstairs in the game room. I got to sleep around 1:30, all set (nearly) for my big day in London!