Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Back inside

I woke up at six today, feeling refreshed and happy with life. No longer was I so exhausted that all I wanted to do was cry. I was alive again. Hurrah!

So I went out for a run, and got ten yards down the street before I realised that I'd left my gloves and hat behind.

These are unwise things to do in January in Seattle, doubly so when it's six fifteen in the morning and the sun has yet to rise. At least it wasn't snowing.

I ran around the lake, which is mystifyingly large, then shambled back to the house and got changed. I had a shave, so now I don't look like some filthy monster that has snuck into America to steal cattle and eat people, ate breakfast, then bid farewell to the bearded dragon and made my way to the offices in Bellevue.

I'm glad that I had the weekend to recover, because today was filled with meetings in slightly-too-dimly-lit rooms, each of which went on for longer than expected, so you'd glance at your watch thinking it was about 9:45 only to see that you'd been in Perpetual Meetingland for two and a half hours, and there would be another two and a half hours left to go. The person chairing the meeting would suggest that we had a five minute break while things were organised, and then rescind this offer before you even reached the door. Back to your chair to listen to somebody mumble about databases for half an hour.

After lunch, more of the same. My will to live was draining out of me, but then at 4:15 I got a message from my best man, who was down in Bellevue for a meeting, and about to fly back to Vancouver. He'd had almost as hellish a journey as me: a 5am start to the day, and then too much time in conference rooms. The flight for him was shorter, but he hadn't had the recovery time in his schedule that I'd been given. I dashed downstairs and spent twenty minutes in a bar with him, before fleeing back to the office as he hared off to the airport. Ah, these scant little opportunities for human contact in this high-tech century.

Dinner was Mexican food back in Seattle, before a long, long taxi ride back across the water, and finally my chance to check in to the hotel. Check in took slightly too long; it was probably only a minute, but the perceived duration, with my intestines contorting themselves and demanding that I do something disgusting in the toilet immediately, felt like a million years.

I felt sullied at myself, and had to leave the hotel room. Not just because of the smell, but because I had to go back to the office to collect my suitcases, and then back once again to the hotel. At least now I am safe and sound, all my underpants close by. That's the sort of thing that makes you relax and feel happier about the world.

It's not snowing. It was terrible last year when the snow came in and Seattle ground to a halt. This year it's just ruddy cold, but people are still capable of driving cars. For this we must be thankful.


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