I managed to blag a trip to New York, to meet the chaps I'd be working with over the coming months. It was my first time inside the Big Apple, and a good way to swap one winter for another.

A long but mostly uneventful day. I didn’t bother sleeping before my 8:50 flight but dozed a little. Ubered to the airport and had breakfast at a branch of Giraffe.

Short flight to Zurich where I had my connecting flight. Only issue was I got a bit confused by the time zones - more to be point, they weren’t clearly labelled - so thought I was missing my flight as I raced through the airport to terminal E. Turns out I was right on time and needn’t have panicked, although getting a bit of a jog on didn’t hurt.

I napped a little on the flight in between Alien Covenant - the last part of which I dozed off for - and Wonder Woman, and a crying - and only occasionally screaming - baby. The parents seemed lovely.

Where it all went wrong is between customs and my hotel, where I manage to wait in a queue for ages without the form I needed (though it was easy enough to borrow a pen and fill in the form and jump back in a queue) and then got completely rinsed by a fake Uber driver. I really should’ve checked the price with him beforehand but it was insane, nearly $300 for an hour’s trip when a taxi would’ve been probably a third of the price.

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The hotel is nice enough. They’re undergoing construction work so it’s behind scaffolding but the interior is pretty cool. My room’s fine; bit small in places but the bed is very comfortable.

I ended the day eating Monster Munch on my bed, and listening to an audiobook, as I didn’t want to venture out for food and didn’t have money for tips even if they did do room service (of which there was no information).

Tomorrow should see me exploring the city a bit. And not spending too much!

Day one

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Woke at a decent time and went straight to Umami Burger for breakfast. They have a fancy ordering system where you get given a spaceship with lights on that vibrates when your order’s up. You take that to the counter and grab your food. Simple!

Then it was off out to try and jump on the Staten Island ferry for a look at the Statue of Liberty. Only problem is that the 1 train to the ferry doesn’t run on Sundays but this information wasn’t made available until after I’d bought my ticket!

So I walked round Central Park and eventually came upon the American Museum of Natural History, which had a fun earth exhibit showing the various layers of the planet on a 3D half-globe.

Then back to the hotel to work until just after 7 when I felt my tummy rumble. I looked up a local burrito place, put in my order and my business debit card was rejected. Walked back to the hotel, grabbed another card and that worked!

It was a good burrito too, so I watched the Punisher on Netflix while I ate. Then to bed for a good night’s sleep, in preparation for tomorrow’s work day.

Day two

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A good first working day, and the city mostly didn’t spit me out. After another burger breakfast I walked to the WeWork and met J who seems a lovely chap. Met a very smiley B and we worked for a couple of hours before heading to a very nice soup-and-sandwich lunch. Then back to the office with E and then to meet G*****l.

I’d been dreading this, but while my brain did its usual flips afterwards, it was not the excruciating encounter I was bracing for, so I’m really happy not to have that looming over me.

After work I took a long and circuitous walk back to my hotel through a crowded Broadway. I all but collapsed on my bed but managed to take myself out to pick up a calzone from the nearby diner, which I enjoyed before finishing the day with another episode of the Punisher.

Tomorrow the fun starts from 9, and hopefully on Thursday I’ll be meeting B to talk Podiant funding potential.

Day three

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Another good work day with the crew. Went to see the company we were partnering with around lunchtime then got a sandwich at a place called Make.

Finished up at around 5:30 and was back at the hotel, burrito in hand not long after 7, after walking B to Grand Central station.

As with Monday, I was pretty tired by the end of the day, so just curled up with a couple of episodes of the Punisher after thinking through my pitch for Thursday.

Tomorrow will be full of work.

Day four

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A day pretty much spent on my own in the hotel, bar a jaunt to check out the Columbus area public library - which was small and boring - and a sandwich at a nice little place.

Recorded early with Jon, then a little later with Brendan, edited and published those shows along with a client podcast and later, Beware of the Leopard. Also managed to close a few email conversations, then finished up with an enormous multi-person pizza from Fluffy’s and a few episodes of the Punisher.

Bit of a restless night’s sleep as I was thinking about my Podiant meeting, but managed to get my hours in.

Day five

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Got up and had leftover pizza for breakfast then headed to E’s apartment to work on work stuff. B then took us for lunch - where I had a nice-enough pulled pork sandwich - and then back to the WeWork via a cab to do some more work.

After work I walked back to the hotel and then pretty much straight away got the F train to Brooklyn to meet Al for drinks and some lovely conversation. Definitely the most enjoyable evening I’ve had in the city. I feel like Brooklyn might be more my speed than Manhattan.

Tomorrow is all about tourism and meeting up with a friend’s soon-to-be-wife.

Day six

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A day of leisure followed a brief conference call with work. I took the New York open-top bus tour around the downtown area, got a chilli dog and then retreated to my room to warm up. The guide was a character, pointing out the odd wise guy fact and giving us his considered opinion on the changes to the city skyline. But it was a couple of hours well spent.

After a break I took off to the subway to catch a train to the Staten Island ferry terminal where I boarded the free boat that gave a view of the statue and the Manhattan skyline. It probably would’ve been better in broad daylight but still it was great to see a symbol of hope, in real life.

Then I cabbed it over to Parlor Steak & Fish to meet some people for drinks. It wasn’t really my speed; we all shared a couple of tiny starters while one friend had her own to herself, then there was a joke about me hogging all the creamed spinach even though that was the side I’d ordered for myself. Apparently the rules are different with that group of friends. I hate that kind of bullshit and I don’t know them well enough to call them on it.

Left and got back to the hotel a bit deflated. I’d been looking forward to a boozy night of good food and raucous conversation. In the end it was a little more sedate and adult. I’d enjoyed my night with Al a lot more.

Plus the steak was just fine; nothing amazing.