Last minute vacations!

Hi guys,

How was everyone’s weekend? Mine included two wine tasting fails (one which was a work event that I was supposed to attend but last minute couldn’t, and the other was because we didn’t pre-buy tickets and when we arrived, they were fully booked) and lots of relaxing. Despite the fails, it was a pretty good weekend!

I haven’t been posting for the past couple of weeks because I was away on a last minute holiday! About 3 weeks ago, Assen and I were in our living room and talking about holidays. I was already planning on going to Vienna and Budapest from 13-16 November, but then was going to be going back to work on the 17th. However, I’m a bit more slow at work right now (which has been amazing), and Assen had some client work which was cancelled last minute. So on the Wednesday night, we booked a flight too….

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New York City!

It ended up being quite a whirlwind trip, as this was the schedule of my 8 day travels:

November 13: I had an early morning flight to Vienna, which meant I was leaving my house at 4 am to catch the bus that would take me to the airport. The night before, Assen and I had gone out to a charity event which was listening to some local live music, and then got home and I had to pack. This meant that I had 3 hours of sleep that night.

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November 14th: Had a nice relaxing day, where I was actually able to explore around Vienna.

November 15th: I was taking the train from Vienna to Budapest. Due to the Paris bombings on the night of the 13th, I had heard varying reports of borders closing, enhanced security, etc. Therefore, I was at the train station by 7 am, to ensure that I wouldn’t end up missing my train. I had planned to nap on the train, but ended up sitting next to an Australian girl so we chatted the time away.

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November 16th: I had the day to explore, and then had to be at the airport for 7 pm to catch my flight home. Because I live in Cambridge, anytime I fly back home, I fly into one of the London airports and then still have to sort out transportation home. So my flight landed at about 11 pm into London, and by the time I took the train, and taxi home, it was about 1:30 am. I unpacked, and then repacked for my trip. There was no point going to sleep, so I uploaded my pictures onto my laptop, and relaxed for a couple hours. We were leaving the house at 4:30 am, to drive to the airport for our New York flight.

November 17th-20: Explored New York City and tried to get used to the 5 hour time change and get caught up on some sleep.

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November 21st-22nd: Because we had booked our flights extremely late, and had gotten a very cheap deal on them, we did not have a direct flight coming back. Our trip back was:

Getting to the airport- anyone ever going to NYC, DO NOT DRIVE TO THE AIRPORT! It took us 3 hours to get t the airport, and by subway, would’ve taken us an hour and a half. Traffic was absolutely terrible. We only had to drive 35 miles, but we sat in traffic for so long that it took us that long. Thankfully, we were spending the day with Assen’s dad (who lives in New Jersey) and his cousins, and they knew it was going to take that long so we left with enough time that we still arrived at the airport with enough time to check into our flight.

Flight #1- We first flew to Toronto. The flight from NYC to Toronto is just over an hour so that part wasn’t too bad. The part that wasn’t ideal was that we landed in Toronto at 11 pm. We were both starving so managed to find the one place still open (Starbucks) and after buying 2 tea lattes, 2 sandwiches, 2 bottles of water, and a dessert for each of us (which cost us $45!) we found a comfy spot to lay out. As we had an 8 hour lay-over.

We had debated getting a hotel, but the airport hotel was going to be over $200, and we would’ve been there for about 6 hours, so figured we would just tough it out at the airport. I tried to lay down on some chairs that we found and sleep, but the airport was very cold, and the chairs were very uncomfortable so I probably got an hour or two of sleep. Assen stayed up and watched our stuff, so he slept for about an hour at the end, once I told him we would switch off and I would stay awake.

Flight #2- finally the long night in the airport was over, and we were able to go through security at about 6 am. I wanted to buy a few things which I can only get in Canada (mainly ketchup chips, nibs, and a Tim Hortons coffee) and wanted to get something for Assen since he’s never been in Canada before. I ran around trying to get everything before we finally boarded our plane

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Our flight home, since we were landing in London at 8:30 pm on Sunday evening, was a struggle to stay awake. I have a whole post coming up about how I try and deal with jet lag so I won’t go into too much detail here, but the main thing is trying to get on the new time zone as quickly as possible. Therefore, I tried to stay awake for the entire flight, so I would be tired when we landed.

The bad part of that plan was that by the time we landed, got our car, and drove back to Cambridge and into bed, it was 2 am. And I was back to work the next day!

So after the whirlwind trip which included a lot of late nights, with early mornings, and getting used to time changes, I’ve spent most of the past week in a tired fog.

However, I am finally feeling like I am back on UK time, and well rested, so I will be posting more details later this week about the trip, along with pictures of everything!

How has everyone else been for the past couple of weeks?

Also- how do you deal with crazy time changes and early flights?

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