Day 1: Monday
10:30 AM (PST): Get to airport. Realize that there actually is life on this planet at 8:00 in the morning. Take uneventful flight to Washington DC.
8:25 PM (EST): Arrive in WA DC airport. Locate smoking cage, attempt to squish self and huge, overstuffed carryon luggage through door before it slams on my ass.
8:30 PM (EST): Smoke frantically. Be completely mystified as people keep sticking their cigarettes up to a spot in the wall above my head, then walking away.
9:00 PM (EST): Realize that there is a wall-mounted cigarette lighter above my head. Quickly exit smoking cage, find gate, board plane.
11:00 PM (CST): Arrive in Nashville. Triumphantly receive upgrade to Pontiac Grand AM, secure car, locate hotel, check in, try to sleep.
3:00 AM (CST): Finally fall asleep. Time changes suck Ass.
Day 2: Tuesday
7:00 AM (CST): Pry eyelids open. Hit snooze.
7:09 AM (CST): Hit snooze.
7:18 AM (CST): Hit snooze.
7:27 AM (CST): This is an ungodly hour of the morning. Hit snooze.
7:36 AM (CST): Finally make self get up, send email to Barbcue, get in shower, get dressed, get out the door.
8:15 AM (CST): Locate Starbucks with GPS. Feel immensely capable as I exit Starbucks with my coffee, look up office on GPS, still totally on schedule.
8:20 AM (CST): Realize I completely forgot tampons. Ass. Self-satisfaction immediately replaced with chagrin.
8:35 AM (CST): Locate Walgreens on GPS. Procure tampons and water, because no one can stand hotel tap water.
8:45 AM (CST): Arrive at office, a little late for trying to be there early, but still on time. Get projector, Webex, training documents organized, start training class.
12:00 PM (CST): Exit office, completely exhausted and talked to death. Drive around looking for restaurant that has wonderful steak and bearnaise that I had last time.
1:00 PM (CST): Finally call No N because I can’t find restaurant. Learn that the restaurant I am looking for is in Philadelphia and not Nashville. Crestfallen, drive to second choice restaurant, have mediocre steak and vodka cran, head to hotel for nap.
6:00 PM (CST): Wake up (after six snoozes), get dressed, head out to car. Locate Demo’s on GPS, head out the door.
6:30 PM (CST): Drive right past restaurant. Recognize Barbcue out front by way of sideburns. Call to confirm, locate parking, walk a block to the restaurant.
6:45 PM (CST): Meet and greet Barcue and roomie. Butterflies in stomach going away, because, they’re not apparently axe murderers after all. Order apple martini, because, well, it’s Nashville.
8:30 PM (CST): Exit restaurant after one mealy steak, getting yellow onions for my potatoes instead of green (and finding that no, that ISN’T a southern thing), one vodka cran plus peach schnapps, one conversation between roomie and manager about the quality of the service we received, and one bowl of free shrimp cocktail that went uneaten.
8:45 PM (CST): Hit Tootsie’s after sitting in car for two minutes before agreeing that we should walk the two blocks since I paid $8 for parking all night.
9:45 PM (CST): Exit Tootsie’s after one jager bomb and three vodka crans. Walk to nearby karaoke temple, Wanna-Bs.
11:30 PM (CST): Exit Wanna-Bs after two more vodka crans, one rendition of Son of a Preacher Man and one of Hard to Handle. Head to the Stage.
12:30 PM (CST): Exit the Stage after witnessing barefoot booty grinding to Conway Twitty, extra-expressive lead singer, and impressive guitar and fiddle playing. Oh, and one more vodka cran. Meander back to car, load up Barbcue’s address in GPS, head out.
1:00 PM (CST): Head back to hotel after dropping off Barbcue, promising to text upon safe arrival at hotel and upon finally obtaining steak at wonderful Philadelphia restaurant.
1:45 PM (CST): Pass out.
Day 3: Wednesday
6:00 AM (CST): Heave self out of bed, cursing because I did not arrange a later flight, get dressed, packed, ready to go. Head to airport for 9:00 AM flight to Philadelphia.
12:25 PM (EST): Arrive in Philadelphia. Finally locate place to meet Hertz rental car shuttle, board shuttle.
1:00 PM (EST): Arrive at Hertz customer service only to be advised that in Philadelphia they don’t accept debit cards to pick up cars, you have to have a credit card.
1:10 PM (EST): Stare at Hertz lady in utter horror. I have no credit card, and in every other city I have been in, my debit card has been fine to get me my car. I am completely nonplussed and I want to tell the lady that she is Ass. But I do not. Instead I bitch and moan for a minute, then exit the Hertz place and head back to the airport.
1:45 PM (EST): Realize that coworker should be arriving at 3:00, she can use her credit card to get the car, I will wait for her to get here.
3:00 PM (EST): Call coworker. Leave message. Watch fantasies of spending free afternoon in Philadelphia fly out the window. Ass.
4:30 PM (EST): Call coworker. Leave more frantic message.
5:30 PM (EST): Call coworker. Advise that I will take a taxi to the hotel, but that she should pick up the car upon arrival.
5:45 PM (EST): Discover that taxi drivers are on strike. There are no taxis. ASS. Total ass.
6:30 PM (EST): Receive call from coworker, plane just landed. She will get car and come pick me up outside the terminal.
7:30 PM (EST): Finally get in car out of the cold. Almost cry with relief.
8:30 PM (EST): Check in at hotel, get changed, head to restaurant (FINALLY) with great steak and bearnaise sauce. Enjoy two martinis, exit stage left. Pass out in about three seconds.
Day 4: Thursday
8:00 AM (EST): Drag self out of bed after a record three snoozes. Meet coworker #1 in lobby, look up Starbucks in GPS, head out.
8:15 AM (EST): Arrive in empty parking lot per GPS directions. At about parking space #345, hear: “You have arrived” from chirpy GPS lady. Look around, discover that there is nothing (not even a Starbucks) within a mile radius, look up a different Starbucks, head out.
8:30 AM (EST): Coffees safely in hand, head towards other hotel to pick up coworker #2. After several U-turns, locate hotel, get everyone in car, Uturn again, get to office.
9:00 AM (EST): Go through another 6 hours of training, finish checking emails, finally leave.
5:00 PM (EST): Confirm plans to meet at 7 for dinner. Take one hour to travel five miles due to mall and rush hour traffic. Realize that nap is most definitely out of the question if I want to catch the Seahawk-49er game at 8:00. ASS!
7:30 PM (EST): Secure tiny bar table at aforementioned fabulous restaurant with great steak. Order steak again for second time in a row, chase off old lady #1 and #2 (55+ and 65+, respectively. Collectively known as old lady cougars) trying to horn in on our table, down a couple vodka crans, discover that the bar does not have the NFL network, leave.
9:00 PM (EST): Head to Fox and the Hound, where they have pool tables, seventeen tvs, and the Seahawks game with a table front and center. Witness an ass kicking the like of which I never hope to see again, leave with tail between legs and completely ready for bed.
Day 5: Friday
8:00 AM (EST): Perform meet-coworker-get-coffee-meet-other-coworker routine. Arrive at office, run around meeting people that previously have been merely voices on a phone, check emails.
12:00 PM (EST): Leave for day of sightseeing in Philadelphia. Hit the bookstore, the Liberty Bell, and Independence Hall. Buy souvenirs. Send text message plus pic to PVDD, exclaiming “It’s not as big as I thought it would be” regarding the Liberty Bell, give up on further Philly sights, head to airport.
6:30 PM (EST): Finally board plane that is an hour late, consoling myself with the idea that I will finally be able to sleep in my comfy exit row seat.
7:00 PM (EST): Discover that the exit row seat is NOT right next to the window, AND the seats do not recline. Fall asleep with head rolling around on the seat, only to wake up and realize my mouth has been hanging open for the last two hours, probably with snores issuing loudly and emphatically therefrom. Give up on the nap and read for the next four hours.
10:00 PM (PST): Finally land at home, wait 30 minutes for the baggage claim, locate car, drive home. At last. Only to discover that internet is down due to windstorms and I can’t log onto myspace and share all my boring adventures. Give up, go to bed.