Aug 23 - Aug 28
Trip Start Aug 23, 2010
44Trip End Ongoing
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- DFW-MIA (except I missed the flight) OK Squad - no laughing!
Aug 24 - DFW-MIA (slept at the Comfort Inn, or didn't sleep, alarm rang at 3:45 for first flight out to MIAMI. Went directly to the MTN office and trained all day)
- second night in the Hampton Inn and Suites, nice room. A welcome package from MTN- very nice. To try and stay awake past 6pm, I decided to go out for food. The Hotel was in the middle of a field surrounded by freeways. I walked across the field, across 8 lanes of freeway to Extreme Pizza! Had a couple of beers and an original pizza. All good!
Aug 25 - training all day! Pretty easy though as I'd done most of it before. Done early and off to the airport! Amazingly enough, big hugs leaving the office - I've only known these people 2 days! Seems like they enjoy their job.
- This time MIA-ATL, then ATL-LHR both on Delta
- I found the Budweiser Brew House near my gate :-)
Aug 26 - I had great expectations of sleeping all the way to London. Reality was more like random moments of sleep, interrupted by fidgeting and shifting around. My luck! I did manage to watch Invictus. Navigating Heathrow, customs, and locating the bus to Southampton was easier than expected. En route, I did the 'hinge and bob' (sporadic sleeping and jerking my head up) even though I wanted to enjoy the English countryside. When I got to the hotel I passed out from lack of sleep - all good. However, I woke up a couple of hours later to the smell of pee :-(. The bed was not clean. I dragged my sorry *&^ out of bed and went to the front desk, got the night person, who gave me a new blanket. It was a lot better, but wasn't really the only thing that needed changing. I tried to get some more sleep in the 1/2 stinky bed but was pretty much wide awake.
Aug 27 - Next morning - not bright, not fresh - uggh! I jumped in a taxi and headed for the port! Adventure is only described as how we maneuver the obstacles in our path! This time, if you can imagine, there is no ship in port. Well, there were ships, but not the Grand Princess! tick tick tick - the taxi meter is running up - so back to the hotel!
My first move was to find some free internet to figure this out. I hung the computer in the library, found the Starbucks in town (only to find it wasn't free), then found some random coffee shop. From what I can tell, its mostly pubs that have the free internet and its just a little early for that :-)
My research tells me the Grand Princess is in Civitavecchia, Italy, and I believe Livorno tomorrow. What a screwup!! I emailed the office for instructions, then my battery died. Luckily I packed a converter and am able to recharge. I suspect my next connection will be from the pub :-)
Back to Heathrow via the bus and overnight in the Holiday Inn. Hang on - there's still adventure to be had! I asked the front desk guy if there was anywhere nearby to get food. "Oh, there's a little English pub just down the road" <smile> Oh ya, The Pheasant - and its packed! Great food, great beer, and conversing with the locals :-)
Aug 28 - Speedbird 600 LHR direct to PISA. Taxi to Livorno port and there she is - The Grand Princess! I had to wait outside while the security crew scrambled to figure out who I was, but was eventually escorted onboard. I met the current manager who graciously let me go back to my cabin and sleep - like a dead person - for 13 hours. Oh ya!