Thursday 20 March 2014

Shaking - or shivering?

Since this was, is and will be the only time in my entire life that I am described as either a mover or a shaker - hell, let's go with both - it deserves recording. This flattering entry is in today's Press Room daily summary in the run-up to next month's IPW Travel Conference in Chicago. It's a massive marketplace where travel and tourism operators, buyers and media come together for some intensive consultation and networking: it's been going for years but this is my first time attending, and it's all slightly scary. It's also going to be a marathon, the days full of meetings and the evenings all about making contacts, so though I'll be staying at the Hilton I won't be seeing much of my room.

It's going to be a great opportunity to connect with people and set up future trips to write about, and I'm also looking forward to to the events that various tourism operations are hosting. Apparently the San Francisco one is unmissable; and I have high hopes of the Disneyland one, too (the famil to Anaheim for the opening of the Finding Nemo ride years ago now is still a vivid memory). What there won't be, sadly, is much in the way of free time for exploring the city, though I am doing a couple of tours. It's an exciting destination with so much going on, amazing architecture (they invented the skyscraper there, did you know: all of 10 storeys), great food, lots of diversity, wonderful museums and art galleries, and so on and on. Oh, and the lake right there, of course.

Though boy, it's been cold there. I've been watching, and this winter has been tough, with lots of snow and negative double figures. The photos of the frozen lake were horrifying, though beautiful. Even now it's still -4 or colder at night, and during the day mostly just single figures; I can only imagine what the wind must feel like ('Windy City', remember). Augh! Because, not only will I be coming from what has been a very hot and dry summer here that's still clinging on, but en route I'll be spending a week in Tahiti, where the temperatures are hovering around 30 degrees. Again, augh! This trip is going to be a sod to pack for.

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