…and home again

Back to London where I was greeted by Autumn. Or rather, rain. Somehow in the ten days I’d been gone, the seasons had changed, the road had been dug up and the little flat in Chalk Farm felt cold.

After an afternoon spent relaxing (but not sleeping) I went to bed at 9pm, woke up at 7:30am, bounced out of bed (in my mind) and staggered off down the hill to catch up on 50,000 emails.

It didn’t take long to get back up to speed and by 6:15pm I called it a day.

What jet lag?

Minneapolis Relaxing

At the airport and I confess, slightly squiffy as I’m on my second glass of wine. It’s gone straight to my head but after a ten day business trip, it’s seriously well-deserved especially as today went really well.

I may regret this in a few hours but right now I’m feeling happy, relaxed and really looking forward to getting home tomorrow.

Minneapolis: The End of the Tunnel

After a delayed departure from New York due to crazy traffic, street closures and a Mexican street fair, we made it to La Guardia airport.

I wasn’t feeling on top form, slightly shivery but hoped it was just a state of mind as I still needed to get through a team dinner and a three hour meeting before getting a night flight back to London on Monday.

Positive thinking!

New York Day Seven: Heading to Minneapolis

Sunday morning and after a quick trip to the pharmacy for essentials, I packed up my stuff and waited for my car to arrive.

It had taken me a while to check in as my date of birth had been input as September 12th 2013, making me three days old and therefore unable to travel as an unaccompanied minor. Thanks a lot for your help American Airlines… not.

I’m feeling quite tired after a manic week and have a slight tickle in my throat. I just need to get though the next forty eight hours and have pencilled in “collapsing” on Tuesday afternoon when I arrive back in London.

Looking forward to going home.

New York Day Six: A Welcome Day Off

Having been to New York many times and having done the major tourist attractions, I decided to go further afield on my day off.

I started the day by walking to the 34th street ferry terminal to get the ferry to Brooklyn. The weather had cooled considerably and while it was sunny, it was chilly.

From the water, the view of Manhattan rose majestically or perhaps that should be congestedly from the river and I wondered about the madness of the architects who built the first skyscrapers.

Manhattan

The ferry took an hour and I finally made it to Brooklyn Park. I jumped in a cab and went to Fort Greene where the flea market was.

I spent a few hours poking through other people’s crap. I found a nice Brooklyn tea towel and some vintage New York cards but otherwise couldn’t look for furniture or glass, my usual brocanting in France.

After the flea market I wandered through Brooklyn, discovering Dekalb Avenue with local eateries and Graham’s Home for Old Ladies.

Graham’s Home for Old Ladies

I have to confess, I don’t quite understand Brownstones. All the buildings are painted brown (hence the name) but with tree lined streets shading the buildings and black painted window frames, Brooklyn felt dark to me.

Another brown Brownstone

By mid afternoon I was starting to fade and decided to head back to Manhattan, this time by subway.

I find the New York subway extremely confusing. I got on a G train which terminated two stops later, crossed the platform as instructed and got on a C train except I was going the wrong way. I got off two stops later but ended up at a station where I could only go in the same wrong direction.

Under the bridge

I set off walking and eventually stumbled across another station. Hurray, this time the C train was heading to Manhattan. I was definitely missing the Northern line at this point, even with engineering works every weekend.

Back in Manhattan I did a little retail research. It’s actually an important part of my job to go shopping so that I’m up to date on what’s trending. It’s quite ironic as I don’t follow fashion personally and am definitely not the target market for the products we design.

And after all that, it was time to relax.

Only two more days to go!

Strategy dinner

First to arrive at the strategy dinner, I strategically sat with my back to the wall. That way no one could sneak up and stab me in the back. Good thinking!

My other strategy. No alcohol. I didn’t want to commit career suicide so it was a fun-filled night on the water for me.

So far the week has gone well. I’m pleased with the presentations. Those who count have seen the best of the presentations and I’ve even got over my public speaking nerves.

Only another six to go…