Jeff Barr's Blog

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Alive and Well in London

tina_carmen_london_2008.jpgI’ve been on the road since the 10th of March when I flew from Seattle to London by way of Chicago. I brought my wife and my oldest daughter along for the first 8 days of my trip.

I’ve been too busy to do much in the way of personal blogging. I have been contributing to the AWS Blog and the AWS Buzz, and have also tried to keep my Twitter stream current.

Since then I’ve stayed in 5 different hotels in London and the surrounding areas. I presented at QCon and had a traditional English Tea in St. James Park. I made day trips to Slough, Rotterdam, and Oxford (where I got to be a judge) and spent 2 days each in Manchester (for the Northwest StartUp 2.0 Demo) and Brighton (for the Bar Camp).

My day trip to Rotterdam was quite productive. A one hour flight across the North Atlantic and there I was. Our return flight landed early but we had to sit on the tarmac for a while because the first Airbus A380 takeoff from London Heathrow was imminent. I was sitting on the wrong side of the plane (a tiny Fokker 50) and didn’t get to see the A380.

Yesterday I started with a “Full English Breakfast” and had Bangers and Mash (sausage and mashed potatoes) later in the day. The Full English breakfast is truly a work of art. It consists of eggs (scrambled, poached, or sunny-side up), baked beans, a grilled mushroom, a grilled tomato slice, some sausage, some bacon, toast, and some black sausage.

My wiki-powered itinerary has worked out really well. I have had an amazing number of meetings. I reconnected with old friends and made some new ones too. I do have two huge envelopes full of receipts and I am not looking forward to spending a day inside of Oracle Expense (previously reviewed here).

 

st_james_park_london_2008.jpgI am meeting some Amazon colleagues for lunch today and I’ll continue on to Washington DC tomorrow. After that I head up to Philly and I will be back at home later in the week.

On the down side I wasn’t planning to be away from home this long. When I was planning my spring trips last year I thought of my London trip as being in mid-March and my DC trip as late March. Without realizing what I had agreed to do, I had created a 17-day monster trip. I won’t do that again. I also failed to notice that tomorrow is Easter Sunday. I’m really missing my family, and I owe them a lot of quality time when I get back on Thursday.