Five meetings and we ended on a high as we’d saved the best till last.
Thursday was the best day of the trip where I saw my style guides being used well, good creative products and not too many requests/complaints. Finally positive reinforcement after a few days of being on the defensive.
I went straight from my last meeting to the airport. Despite having three and a half hours, it turned out that I needed every minute as the traffic was horrendous and then the shuffling queues to get through security were ridiculous.
Still, I was back on my mini break so shuffled along with everyone else with controlled frustration.
Once onboard though, things slowed down and we sat on the runway for an hour and a half. It was a surreal flight as I was drifting in and out of sleep, waking up from the pain of awkwardness from time to time and then nodding off again, headphones and sleep mask dulling my senses.
I arrived in LA well after midnight and got a taxi (a literal hen’s tooth) to my friends’ house in Venice. Driving down Lincoln Boulevard, things didn’t look much different. A few new buildings, a couple of new restaurants but in almost two years since I was last here, and over three years since I left, not much change that was immediately noticeable.
My life has changed a great deal since I left LA and I suspect, as have I. It’s inevitable. Still, a weekend in the city I used to call home catching up with friends is a rare treat indeed.
Despite my intention to treat this trip as a mini break with meetings, a twelve hour day with three meetings and a business dinner scuppered my plans somewhat. I staggered into my hotel room at 9:30pm absolutely shattered, having left at 9am.
And with five meetings booked for Thursday, it would seem the meetings are currently winning.
These weeks are tough, it’s a performance review each time for me as a few hundred people tell me if I’m doing my job well… or not!
Trying to please everyone…
After a day fraught with technical glitches, I decided to enjoy a nice cold glass of champagne in the hotel bar.
Champagne is the perfect tonic for all things. A celebration, a tonic, feeling down or just because. It is the perfect pick me up and this was no exception.
My first presentation had gone well. I presented to over fifty people where I consciously made eye contact, stood up straight and tried to be energetic and engaging. Despite my reclusive tendencies, I am a fairly natural presenter and quite enjoy it.
The second presentation was a chaotic mess and was decidedly less successful. Technology let things down but eventually we struggled through to a rather sorry end. It wasn’t exactly the highlight of the week. Ouch.
With the hardest part of the week over, I can start to think about heading to LA for the weekend.
Cheers to that!
I believe I mentioned there was a heatwave in New York.
It turned out it was the hottest day of the year today with temperatures of 33 degrees Celsius or something even more ridiculous.
I am lucky in that I get to enjoy the extremes of New York. It’s either January and so cold that one’s eyeballs freeze, or July where the smell of hot rubbish fills the crowded city streets. Today was the latter. Maybe one day I’ll come in April and see a side to New York that makes me understand why people live here!
So as I’m on a city break, I’m viewing this as training for Greece as I expect the temperatures to be well over 40 degrees (horrors, I melt in anything over 24!)
Did I mention I bought a kaftan?
At 10am this morning I stood up and talked for an hour and a half.
During that time I drank two litres of water and the kennel cough behaved admirably. Only towards the end did I feel I was getting close to barking but all was well and I made it through without a woof!
The rest of the day was spent in three back to back meetings. I continued to drink gallons of water and all was well.
Two presentations, fourteen meetings and two dinners to go!
I arrived into a very hot and humid New York last night and made it to my room by 9pm local time. By 10pm it was lights out as I was exhausted and despite a little bit of kennel coughing, I made it through to 6am.
On the agenda today, an hour and a half presentation followed by three back-to-back meetings. I’m viewing the next few days as a mini break with meetings and will enjoy having air conditioning, an enormous bed and room service before heading to LA for a mini break with friends.
Apparently there’s a heat wave in New York while it’s raining in LA. Wardrobe dilemmas ensue!
This week, while I’m in New York, Letad has the builders coming in to install the kitchen floor… we hope.
The original kitchen had a concrete floor with a thin layer of plastic lino glued over the top, it was never going to work and so up came the lino and since January we’ve had an empty shell with a bare concrete floor. Thankfully it’s summer but it was very cold for a while.
This week the plan is to lay the Victorian floorboards over the concrete so the hall flows continuously into the kitchen and we can roller skate from the living room to the kitchen if we want to. Letad will sand said floorboards (what a nightmare that was last time) and then with a few coats of varnish, we will be ready to install the kitchen.
There are times when it feels as if we’ll never be finished but with the kitchen on the horizon and plans for a very, very small deck and pebbles in the prison yard, I’m beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Looking forward to coming home!