Category Archives: trip

Planning A Trip

I have been talking about going to Paris and London for a few weeks over the summer, but now I am planning it. It is actually happening, and I am days away from booking things. I figure once I am done teaching summer school I will have a few weeks before Fall semester, and the insanity of holding down two jobs, going to grad school, and my own life, so this may be my last chance for a while to go back. If I had a little over two weeks I would throw Amsterdam in there as well, but really two weeks is just enough to have a hectic yet relaxing trip in two countries. And since the last time I have gone the TGV has improved significantly, which should facilitate travel a bit.

I am currently a little too excited, so I am simply looking at flights and hotels because I know myself well enough to know I will totally overbook everything if I start. I figured I can fly into Charles de Gaulle, spend the week, take the TGV to London, spend another five days, and fly out of Heathrow.

I haven’t done international flying in so many years I am a little confused about the ticket buying process. Last time I did it I went through a travel agent, and she basically did everything for me. Also, I didn’t have an itinerary, so I kind of just landed and found the hotel and everything while there, wandering around. Maybe it has to do with my age, but now that just seems so haphazard. The idea of landing in a foreign country with no planning is all of a sudden terrifying, despite that I have done it a dozen times. A few months ago when I went to San Francisco and then later to Portland I had everything pedantically planned out weeks in advance. So you can imagine I am not about to fly to Paris on a whim. When did this happen to me? I used to drive cross state, or even half way across the country due to vague inclination, and now I am all of a sudden neurotic about everything. I need to plan the flight, hotel, distance. When did I become this person?

Well, I may have gotten more responsible (if that is how you want to look at it), but that won’t stop me from having an amazing trip. In the meantime I will be off finding an online algorithmic calculator that can project the exchange rate eight months from now.


Random Pictures

Today was good, especially in comparison to yesterday. My presentation went very well, and I got to meet a lot of very wonderful and brilliant people. I am not going to really talk about the conference since most of you who have been to conferences know what it is like, and for those of you who haven’t, well, my paltry description won’t really elucidate much.However, during one of the longer breaks I walked around a bit and took some fun pictures.

This was directly across the street from the conference.

I tried getting a close up of the tower….
I just like the way this building looks.
There was a park/sitting area down the street…. the autumn colors looked so beautiful.
This is a terrible picture, but this coffee shop was actually pretty cute.
I haven’t the slightest clue what these things are, but they reminded me of printing presses. Either way, this building had a bunch of them, and I had wanted to take pictures since yesterday… finally got a chance to do so as I was walking back to my car tonight.
Tomorrow I am going into actual Portland, so I should have more to share then.

My Day, Briefly

Today was exhausting. I have been up since three in the morning and had to be at the airport before the sun was even up. The flight was fine, but the car rental place was not. Everyone and their brother decided to rent a car today, and the wait was almost two hours. I had reserved a small sedan, but by the time I got to the counter they didn’t have any left. I ended up with an SUV type thing. It is a Ford of various natures. They didn’t increase my cost any, but the car is a little bigger than what I am used to, so I am driving cautiously to the point of probably annoying everyone else on the road.

By the time I got to the hotel, changed and drove across the bridge I pretty much missed more than half of today’s conference and was only able to catch one panel, after which they had a social hour/banquet.

I chatted for a bit with people who I have until now only spoken to via email, but I wasn’t feeling altogether social. In fact there were so many people there I felt slightly overwhelmed.

So I am having dinner in my room with my blog and books.

Highlights of my day? Hot shower and the fact that there is a Starbucks 0.2 miles from my hotel.

Tomorrow there might be some pictures.