Friday, 28 November 2008

Sorry I haven't posted since 22nd.... it's been a long week.

I'm back home now (arrived at Manny airport Thursday around 10 a.m.) and slowly getting over the jet lag. Tried to post a couple of times this week from various hotel rooms but failed miserably so please accept apologies for the length of this note - there's some catching up to do!

Anyway - after a nice weekend in Fremont Ohio, - (pic - Ohio Sunset Saturday night)

I drove to Grand Rapids Michigan on Sunday afternoon 23rd Nov. Uneventful journey on a lovely day as the pic below illustrates. Think it's the I-96 but I'm not 100% sure.

Had a relaxing evening at the Radisson Hotel and prepared for my meeting the next morning. They had predicted snow but I did not expect what greeted me as I arrived at the customers premises on Monday morning!

And that was only the start! After a meeting and lunch, I headed for Bellfontaine Ohio. Around 4 inches of snow had settled in Grand Rapids but the weather conditions got better as I went further south. It still took me close on 6.1/2 hours to do what should be a 4.1/2 hour drive but I got there eventually.

Tuesday meeting at Belle Center Air Tools was, as always, very relaxed and friendly. These people are some the nicest I have met on my travels and the visit always feels like a "family" visit. Not surprising I guess when you consider this is a small family owned business. We discussed what we needed to, had lunch then I went back to my hotel. Julie & Jay (and their 8-month old daughter Jalie) joined me for a very nice dinner and at around 8 pm, I drove back to my hotel for a good nights rest before heading for home Wednesday.

I set off around 9:30 a.m. to drive to Pittsburgh where I'd catch a flight to Newark, NJ and then to Manchester. The drive went smoothly enough but Ohio and Pennsylvania had contrasting weather - fine and sunny in Ohio but snowy and grey in Pittsburgh.

Anyway - on arrival at the airport where I was to leave the rental car, I had a moan about the sat-nav unit they had rented me. It was worse than useless because it wouldn't charge whilst in the car and turned itself off at random intervals! Not a great help when it's supposed to be helping you find places.

I checked in at Continental Airlines and was offered earlier flights! Only $50 to change it and it meant I'd get to Manchester at 7:30 Thursday morning instead of 10 a.m.! I should have known - after the events of the trip so far......

We got on the plane to take us to Newark NJ and pushed back from the gate. After about 20 minutes of not moving the pilot announced a technical problem meant we had to go back to the gate and everyone had to get off!!

Of course - that blew my connection to the earlier Newark NJ flight so I ended up coming home on the flights I'd originally booked, having paid an extra $50 for the privilege!

Popped into the office for a couple of hours this morning (it was stocktaking time so I didn't hang around!) and now you're pretty much up-to-date!

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