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Jun142007

On the Road

My Current Location: London, England at the Royal Garden Hotel

Damn it! I have to pack once again. We fly to Oslo tomorrow. Who the hell decided 5 am was a civilized hour to round up in the lobby & head to Heathrow!?!

I’ve been blessed to have four non-show days, in London, smack in the middle of a tour. Four days that went quicker than a bloody festival day in the middle of Switzerland!

Four days in a hotel is pretty much like going home. I’ve fully unpacked, taken over the closet and the bathroom looks like I’ve lived here forever. Hell, I’ve spent more time in this hotel than I have at home in the last two months.

Despite the deficit in my per diem and the insurmountable balance on my AMEX – because the internet alone in the hotel is 20 quid a day…. bloody hell! The cost of doing business is all I can say to justify it. But who cares! I’m in London, a city where you can walk every where and at any turn, stumble upon something waiting to be discovered.

A new shop, a cute cafe, unlimited people watching potential. Tube excursions & markets brimming with people in a hurry to spend money. It feels as if no one here works, they perennially shop. Such a fantastic city and it’s exactly what I needed in order to freshen my spirit and finish out this tour.

A means to an end. One must always have a plan B in life – but it’s imperative to keep it secret. So secret, that plan C is unaware of plan B….. know what I mean? ;-)

I’m mentally in a good place and despite the lack of direction this diary entry has, it truly is just a day in the life of a woman on tour. So deal with it, embrace it and go with the flow – it’s part of the journey, destination is no longer of importance. Because the ultimate destination will change after every new discovery, after every new experience, so there’s truly no need to set one in stone. And with that, off to the next city & the next country I go!

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Jun12007

On the Road

The American in me gets frustrated at times when working in Europe. Hotels with no air condition. Double-Decker tour buses and I don’t mean the tourist ones, I refer to the ones we sleep on while traveling in Europe. Buses with incredibly narrow spiral staircases. Stairs one must climb in order to get in and out of the bus. A bus with no luggage space, no refrigerator space, a bus where you cannot stand straight up and walk in. The toilet on our bus is so tiny & ever so smelly, it’s actually worse than ones found on airplanes. In order to use them, you must walk in backwards to sit down to then close the door. There’s no turning around in there – it’s impossible unless you are Mini Kiss. A toilet space so small, the crew boys must sit to pee. He he ;-)

Poor service in restaurants. Horribly slow & stupidly expensive internet – that rarely works, unless you are in Germany. Everything & everyone seems to work there. Inefficiency appears to run rampant as everyone is enjoying yet another day off because of “a bank holiday.” Which basically equates to a day off in a pub somewhere or another lazy afternoon in the garden with a cup a tea. And while that seems lovely – its not very lovely when you need to get shit done.

Streets emit a whiffy scent of urine. Especially nice when sitting at a sidewalk cafe. Nothing like the wafting of wee to compliment the best cappuccino you’ll ever have. Europeans do right by their tea & coffee and for this I applaud them!

But then I must STOP. I catch myself in a spiral of negativity.

I STOP. I SMILE.

Suddenly, the moody American disappears and the World Traveler in me returns. Back to enjoying this journey.

Yes, I want to be efficient at my job, which is the purpose of my trip. But I cannot stress at the expense of missing out on taking in the city I’m currently in. I do embrace the cultural differences and certainly adapt well but it’s a matter of discovering yet another way to accomplish the tasks at hand. No single culture is better – we’re simply different and one must shift the mind set accordingly.

Pee pee may permeate the sidewalks, which are full of the cutest cafes, with terrific coffee and the best vantage point for people watching…. but I’m ordering another cappuccino and I am going to breath it all in – it’s part of the experience.

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