London would be another short distance deployment place where I have been couple times already. Last week however stochastic processes of nature were not working for me. I faced unusual series of funny accidents that made my work week much more colorful.
In Frankfurt, connection hub, I had the flight to London Heathrow. As always I quickly browsed thru the list of flight to get the terminal and gate, and proceeded. Twenty minutes before departure I queued at the end of line of people at the gate. The stewardess gave my adrenaline boost when she informed me I am at the wrong place. There was another flight to LRH at exactly the same time. I did not find it on display, it had to appear later on when I was fixed on my route to the gate… oops. Having virtually 5 minutes before gates close, and long route to different terminal I started run. It took around 15 minutes with short breaks for passport control or security screening. Wet as a dog I reached to the gate 5 minutes before departure, when the crew already switched display off, the gate was closed. The lady called airplane captain to answer if they allow me to get in or not. Several long seconds later I was granted boarding. Cooling off for another 30 minutes I was happy I started running trainings couple weeks earlier.
At the Heathrow I found myself the only passenger waiting for luggage to come. Concerned about next morning with business dress-code, I simple could not pop up in jeans and T-shirt. Luggage service desk officer told me my luggage was mishandled. Damn, what the frequent flier membership is for, if they miss exactly your luggage? They offer free delivery to hotel next day plus sanitary pack for that night. Problem was that delivery would be late morning next day, since luggage was expected past 10pm this evening. I decided to stay at the airport for next 3h and pick it up when arrives. Struggling with getting back through security to baggage area, I was close to face another disaster – luggage service has forgot I am waiting and they almost send off my luggage for next day delivery. I was at the hotel after midnight quickly preparing for next day.
On Monday,the first day of implementation workshop I facilitated, I faced another infrastructure disaster. IBM business center is what it stands for: business. Trying to create client-server network using visitors wireless network was challenging due to time pressure and lack of any technical stuff in the center. Moreover, the delivery of additional laptops was slipped and in effect we started with 3 hours delay. In the meantime I managed to hire WiFi router from external company to be ready next day, to avoid any further disruptions.
Next day for contrast, while having breakfast, fire alarm has triggered and all hotel guests were immediately evacuated outside the building as they stood up. I was only in shirt and trousers and I had to wait out there in windy late Autumn weather. The hotel staff could not even deliver blankets to keep guests warm. I could not resist to tell them “fuck you very much”, and I walked to lobby of the hotel nearby. 40m later I was back in my room packing up in a rush to shorten my delay in workshop start.
On Wednesday I decided to try tube instead of taxi. Quicker and reliable means of transportation, no traffic jams and train every 2-3 minutes, then short walk from metro station to the office. All these things seamed to be positive. I was taken by surprise again: one train earlier a passenger collapsed and all other trains had to wait for 20 minutes for clearance. I was delayed again. Imagine attendees listening to my unrealistic excuse again.
Expecting more situation to happen I did not find myself disappointed. My brand new fashion winter shoes have shoe lace holders instead holes. With one not so strong move I torn of couple holders that happily dangled on shoe lace. Well, make a claim, you would say. However I got rid off 50% of my shoes during my trip 🙂
I could tell you more about light digestion problems and some other little annoyances. To balance that series of bad luck, I had successful workshop feedback and that was major point. I could also wangle around one afternoon to take some photos to my album. Misery loves company, big company in my case.