(Dorothea Brooke made it all the way to the Venice Biennale 2009 earlier this month. However, her report for NFN, a travelogue in eight installments, comes from Paris, the wireless capital of the continent…)
International travel is a rude reacquaintance with the world—each his own suitcase, his travel-sized toiletries, his disposable meal: can we all do this?—and I remember why I am in the academy. I think of John Bayley, the Oxford Don, lost on the train to London, or somewhere, retreating home from fright. Next to me, a baby is inconsolable with tears and rage and I think: I know what you mean. We are so many, and we are a scourge!
My partner bids me to take a cosmic perspective; he proffers weak tea; he absorbs himself in maps. I make dogged sleep in a plastic chair by our gate; 8 hours laid-over in Dublin.