I leave this evening for London, and will spend the week there, returning to California on Friday afternoon.

These days, there are only a handful of places in the world that reward the sacrifice of being away from my family and regular life. Fortunately, London could have a couple spots in my top ten, not just one. I find the city endlessly fascinating: it’s one of those places that seems a mirror of the world– or parts of the world that aren’t mirrored here in the Valley.

Fortunately, my children are pretty resilient, my wife is perfectly competent to run the house on her own (I suspect it might even be a little easier when I’m not here), and we have a lot of family support. Without those things, this would be impossible.

International travel was not sold as one of the perks– or requirements– of this job when I took it. Thank goodness I spent lots of time on the road when I was a kid, as my dad moved us around Brazil and the rest of Latin America, reconstructing the history of 19th-century agricultural elites. You never know what experiences you have as a kid are going to come in handy as an adult.

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