Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this blog are entirely our own and not necessarily those of our employer or any other occupational therapist.

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Of Earthquakes, lost baggage and a world of occupational therapists........

As promised here is our first blog post from Chile. What a journey, anyone who tells you that it is a good idea to spend 24 hours travelling to a conference for three days and then do the same thing again on the return is spinning you a tale!! In our naivete (geography not being a strong point) we had convinced ourselves that it was a 9 hour flight. Only the night before, after reading the tickets more closely (and thus a moral in the tale!) did we realise that it was 14 hours from Paris - therefore door ro door was a little under 24 hours.

Flights were on time, we were on time, all went to plan - apart from a moment of disappointment whilst boarding the 777 - walking past seats a plenty with space, leg room and built in speakers etc - and realising that these were not for the likes of us as we were shown to our own seats - squished in like kippers, or is that sardines?. Luckily the third man in our row of three took great umbridge at the man in front constantly reclining his seat and asked to be moved which meant we were able to spread out a bit.
We had planned to use the time wisely on the flight - pour over the conference programme and work out the optimum attendance at sessions. Oh dear, flight spent watching "Love Actually", trying to sleep, eating rather bizarre combinations of food (lamb meatballs with semolina), and trying to work out how long we had left before arrival.
First problem was encountered at Santiago airport, Sarah´s case never showed up, Air France are convinced it will turn up tomorrow - wonder a) where it has gone and b) why they are so convinced it will show up tomorrow?). Luckily I have packed enough for any contingency so we should be Ok if it doesn´t arrive.
Anyway, finally arrived at hotel, very nice if a little basic but we desperately needed a bit of a nap. Just dozing off and the beds started to move. An earthquake!!! Apparently epicentre was about 400 miles away but we felt it quite strongly here. Too tired to worry too much so after packing an emergency "earthquake bag" ie all important things we might need to be grabbed when we run, we went back to sleep!
We have just returned from eating a rather nice Asian meal - yes I know we are in S America - but we couldn´t find traditional fare local street seems to be dominated by MacDonalds, Starbucks, Pizza Hut and Dunkin Donuts! Although we did try a local cocktail Pisco Sour - hmm ok but wouldn´t choose it again!

We have begun to make contact with our fellow presenters at conference and have begun to make rendezvous appointments with some of our facebook colleagues in order to network and plan for any future collaborations.

The conference starts in earnest on Tuesday so we have tomorrow to get in some sightseeing before the hard work begins. I am unable to post photos yet as I cannot get internet access on my notebook (am sat in an internet room in the hotel at the moment) but Sarah and I will be reporting on the conference and our exploits as regularly as we can either here or on our Facebook page. I now feel the need for another lie down and maybe need to look at the conference proceedings too.

Here´s to an uneventful night!!!!!

1 comment:

Merrolee said...

Hey guys;... 24 hours - that's nothing!!! Welcome to the usual for us for world travel!! But seriously pleased to hear you are here safely... and Sarah - what size are you are.. we can help out with clothes
Merrolee and Anita
(in our basic hotel but with a nice south american cafe just across the park form us and we've survived a trip to the supermarket). We've also master the word gracias but we won't tell you here how we remember it...