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6 October 2008

A Tale of Three Cities

It's typical that, having been marooned in the wilderness that is Nowheresville for years on end, three cities then come along all at once. My body ought to be confused--a week in hot, wet NYC, 5 hours behind the UK, a week in wintry, rainy London, and now an Indian Summer in California. I'm glad I brought my bikini (or not--it would have been an excuse to buy another).

London was a rainy mess when I left this morning. A series of unfortunate events meant that having boarded our flight--nominally from Terminal 5, though probably geographically closer to Manchester--on time, we sat on the plane for almost two hours. When we eventually took off, my armrest played up so I had to move seats, which meant I wasn't by a window but instead had some fat Dutchmen sitting next to me--they were getting so trashed, they had to have a stern warning from the senior cabin crew woman.

The people in immigration were as pleasant as ever. I thought I'd picked the right queue but then the Frenchman in front of me was asked why he was here. "Business--I work for Googs," he sez. Immigration officer asks how long for and he says three months. He means he has worked for Googs for three months but she thinks he means he might stay longer than the limit and asks to see his return ticket, which he doesn't have--error! Frenchie gets sent to the naughty corner and I am careful not to make the same mistake although, as ever, explaining what I do seems to cause infinite confusion ("so, you're a journalist?" / "I wish..." / "so, you're here to be trained?" / "I do the training" etc.). Luckily, the drive in from the airport was gorgeous and sunny, which cheered me up no end.

I was really in a rush to get into the city because I wanted to go shopping and two of my favourite shops shut at 6.30, so in about an hour and a half. I can tell when I'm truly exhausted and/or jetlagged because I lose the will to shop. This time, it is a fashion emergency, though, as my jeans have become so loose they barely stay on my hips in their beltless state. It's possible I may buy other stuff too though.

Ah, California. It's good to be back; I think.


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