Thursday, October 08, 2009

Sparks and Brighton


This is the day that we're taking a train from London to Brighton. I've worked for the same company for over 13 years, and throughout my career here I have worked with people from our Brighton office in various departments. I used to fantasize that my employer would find a reason to send me there, but I gave up that fantasy long ago. If I'm going to go to Brighton, it will have to be on my own... and at last I have the opportunity!

As we're getting ready to leave in the morning, I decided to make my hair straight (I had been embracing the humidity and letting my hair go curly up to this point). The hotel room came equipped with an outlet for a standard american plug, but that outlet wasn't working for some reason. Luckily, Julie brought a converter plug for the european outlet. After I dried my hair, I plugged in my flatiron and ***SPARKS*** accompanied with a loud BOOM! All of our power is out. Thank goodness it was just a blown fuse and a simple flick of a switch performed by the maintenance man corrected the problem. Although I'm sad to say, my flatiron is toast. I paid $150 for this flatiron two years ago. Trust me, there is a huge difference between nice flatirons and cheap flatirons. So until I have another chunk of change to spend on a new flatiron, I'll have curly hair.

And now to Brighton!

We visited the office and I was able to meet a bunch of colleagues face to face for the first time... which was awesome! After that, a few of them took us to lunch at the Brighton Yacht Club:

Across the road is the UK version of Wal-Mart, actually owned by Wal-Mart!

[sarcasm]I had to get a picture of that since I love Wal-mart oh so much.[/sarcasm]

Unfortunately, most of the rest of our tour of Brighton was from a car, so the pictures are sketchy, and I didn't get to spend any time at all at the Brighton Pavilion.

Looking down Brighton Beach:

Brighton Pier, which we didn't visit due to the massive crowds:

An old abandoned pier:

The Brighton Bandstand, newly refurbished:

Tour guide Bob (he's a colleague, he gave us a tour of this and some of London via automobile) took us further along the coast, about 20 minutes away, to the Worthing Pier which has less of a fanfare.

Jules and I in Worthing:

Gawd I hate getting my picture taken next to skinny and tan people!

The Worthing Pier:

We walked along the pier, got ice cream cones (It's called a "99"... vanilla ice cream with Flake bars... YUMMY!)

We sat on the pier and talked about life and families and religion and politics and work and well, pretty much everything. Sitting there looking out over the ocean, enjoying ice cream and good company- what an great time! I decided that if I were to ever live there, I would spend at least an hour on that pier every week to meditate.

The town of Worthing:

Looking out into the ocean, directly west. Tour Guide Bob told us that if we swim towards the sun, eventually we'll be back in America:

Luckily we didn't have to, we still had a few days left. Next will be my Wednesday story- my favorite day of the trip!