Philip Brewer's Writing Progress


Tuesday, 01 July 2003

I'm back in the country.

I've actually been back since late Sunday night, but it took until now to recover from jet lag and general exhaustion to be able to update my journal.

The flight back left Copenhagen around mid-afternoon. My initial plan was to get to the airport around noon, three hours before my flight left. Someone more adventurous or more organized than me would have put together some sort of plan to do something in the morning, but I didn't. I just finished my packing and then sat around waiting until time to go to the airport.

Actually, I did go do one thing Sunday morning. I walked across the bridge to the other side of the canal the hotel was on, to where there's this boat hull mounted upside down on some big supports. I'd assumed it was a Viking boat--the shape is about right--but wanted to go look and see if there was a sign or plaque or something. There wasn't, so the boat is still a mystery. If it is a Viking ship, it's bigger than I'd imagined them to be. You could fit dozens of people in it, at least for a few hours. If you had to bring food and water for a trip lasting days, I guess the crew size would shrink accordingly.

By mid-morning I was getting anxious (as I often do before a trip), so I figured I'd just go to the airport. I figured getting their early would be harmless--I was already just sitting around waiting, which I could do at the airport as well as in my room. That turned out to be a smart move.

The hotel had somehow checked me out of my room already. When I tried to pay my bill they thought I was somebody else paying for two rooms. They figured it out, but it took a while. I'd have been pretty anxious if I didn't know I had about five hours of extra time.

At the train station I ran into another problem. I took a number and waited for my turn (something that seems to be common in Denmark) only to have the clerk tell me "I'm sorry, I can't help you. You have to stand in line at window 1, 2, or 3 to get this ticket." I don't know what the problem was--we'd gotten tickets on the exact same train at those windows the day before. That time we were getting round trip tickets to Malmo, which is a few stops further down the line. Maybe it was the short distance, maybe one-way versus return. In any case, I got to stand in another line. More anxiety avoided by being really early.

Before I left the country, I needed to get customs to verify that I was taking certain pieces of test equipment back out of the country. At the customs window, though, they wouldn't stamp my form. The reason turned out to be that they didn't need to stamp the form, because they'd already handled it on their electronic system, but they didn't manage to get that message across. So I spent most of an hour trying to track down help on a Sunday morning. In the end, it was no big deal, but I was kind of anxious at the time.

That was the end of it, though. After that I checked in without difficulty (the line was long, but not longer than expected), cleared security, and cleared immigration without any problems. I got to my gait with about two hours to spare.

Monday was kind of a dud. I was achy from the combination of sitting in an airplane seat for nine hours preceded and followed by lugging too much stuff around. (It's hard to pack for nine days. Up to a week is easy, but nine days falls into the range where I'm not sure whether to just plan on doing laundry, or to try to pack enough that I don't need to. Plus I had to carry an extra whole bag of test equipment.) I was okay in the morning, but got gradually sleepier and ended up going to bed at 8:00. I was achy enough that I didn't lift or run.

Today is better. Not so achy. Went for a run this morning. Stayed awake until 9:00. I think I'm all better.

I haven't gotten much done. Getting caught up at work. Watched some Buffies with Jackie. Copied the journal entries I wrote in Copenhagen to my regular computer and fixed a few of the most egregious typos. No writing, although I was toying with an idea for a story, so that's better than nothing.

It's good to be home.


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