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Sunday, July 09, 2006

Bon Voyage

That's about the limit of my French, so in 24 hours I shall be looking desperately for an Anglophone Canadian Taxi driver...

Well, I'm almost packed and ready. I've noticed something strange - my wheeled suitcase is definately shrinking. Tonight I ironed 8 shirts and placed them neatly in a spare suit carrier. They are now folded three times to fit in my shinking case. And let's not even start on the fun I had fitting my actual suit in! The case looked HUGE when I bought it a few years ago - now it seems that I could take it as carry on.

It looks as if the curse of my dodgy reference is even worse than I suspected. One particular employer emailed me to say that he wanted to speak to me on the phone before deciding if I should visit. Good timing - what with me having just put over £1,000 of flights on my credit card and booking a hotel HE RECOMMENDED near to his University! So I phoned him and he gave me a few hints at what was wrong with the reference, concluding that it had probably screwed all my chances of getting funding in the future. Thanks a bunch boss! Fortunately, another supervisor has agreed to write any future references so I will try and find out who is writing the bad one and ditch them. Anyway, when I explained that there were a number of factors behind the bad reference - and that I was coming anyway because I had connecting flights - he agreed to meet me. So, fingers crossed!

So, I have almost finished. I just need to print a few more maps and workout a few more bus routes (thank god for Google maps and Wikipedia!) and I am pretty much ready to go. Of course it hasn't all been plain sailing. I lost £20 on cancellation charges when I inadvertantly booked a hotel West of the airport rather than East (the direction of the University I am visiting that day). Fortunately, I noticed my error when I went to print a map out - so I am now only 15 minutes from the University rather than 45. Doh! Those long American streets with 10,000+ houses are a little confusing when you are trying to locate them on a 800x600 pixel map...

Anyways, blogging may be a little light for the next two weeks. Some of the hotels might have internet access that I can plug my laptop into - in others I may just have to rely on the charity of whatever lab I'm visiting to let me access my hotmail. I won't be using blogger on any body elses PC - I have no desire to be outed in the midst of a job interview! I plan to access my email daily - not least because one of the labs I am visiting later in the week has yet to email my itinery, accomodation details or the name of the person meeting me at the airport... useful things to know, I am sure you will agree!

So farewell, and I'll post soon.

PS I doubt I'll have time to do a Tuesday Twat when I am away. Nevertheless, I am confident that my belief that human beings are the same the world over will be proven right in the form of a bumper crop of North American Tuesday Twats that will appear upon my return.



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