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Ave Valencia - Sex and Sums and a Controlled Dose of Rock and Roll [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Richard Clegg

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Ave Valencia [Apr. 17th, 2010|12:57 pm]
Richard Clegg
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So, I did not really want to come to this Future Internet conference anyway but, you know, there are those things that you've just got to do as part of your job. This ash cloud thing has proved a problem really. There's no shortage of ingenuous plans for getting home but, alas, there's always a critical flaw. The sleeper trains are booked up for days. There's whacky train routes via Barcelona, Toulouse, Perpignan, the moon and so on... all of which are rather spoiled by the French industrial action (which I fully support and the concept of a strong labour union marks france as a civilised nation, but really... could they kind of just settle the dispute today please?). At the moment we're trying to find enough English people to want to go on a bus... yes, a bus from Valencia to London. The problem is that several people want to stop in Brussels which is less than convenient.

I have a flight for tomorrow evening (my original flight was Friday evening) but there seems little chance of Iceland getting its house in order by then. Honestly, Iceland, you don't see Greenland causing this trouble do you? Who knows... it may be time to start learning Spanish.

I would be concentrating on hard sums or being a tourist but it's damned hard to concentrate when there are a dozen foreign language web sites any of which might just think about selling you a train ticket to get home. Current best guess is that my journey home will take around 36 hours if the plane is cancelled. So far, I've checked out of my hotel and checked back in one floor lower. 2 meters in 24 hours. Every journey begins with a step.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: kissmeforlonger
2010-04-17 01:15 pm (UTC)
Train to Santander, Ferry? The Bilbao ferry is booked for the next few days. It is a really gorgeous place to spend a few days, though.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-04-17 10:00 pm (UTC)
Santander ferry is booked for a few days and takes pretty much 24 hours and also costs about 600 euros right now. The coach is cheaper and faster.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-04-17 10:00 pm (UTC)
We should be fine now -- we've a coach booked and enough distressed UK residents to fill it.
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[User Picture]From: surliminal
2010-04-18 12:23 am (UTC)
I am finding this all tremendously blitzy/9-11/scifi-Whyndamesque. Quite weird. Also amazed that after 5 weeks solid travelling this all happened just as i hit a travel free patch! result... I must say being stuck in Spain doesn't sound tooooo bad, but i guess you have teaching to get back to?? (Still term here in Sheff.)
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-04-20 11:11 am (UTC)
I'm a research fellow so no teaching -- I do one or two lectures a year (and get overtime for that) which is a damned good deal really. The only issue is job security.
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[User Picture]From: valkyriekaren
2010-04-17 02:19 pm (UTC)
Good luck - hope you make it back safe and sound.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-04-17 10:01 pm (UTC)
As long as I can get through the journey without killing a colleague.
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[User Picture]From: valkyriekaren
2010-04-18 10:56 am (UTC)
Just make sure it's one that nobody cares about.
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[User Picture]From: drdoug
2010-04-17 04:43 pm (UTC)
Do you have any red hot mathematical physicists in your party? This might be the pressure we need to invent macro-scale teleportation.

I love the idea of you all in a big red Routemaster, like Cliff Richard in Summer Holiday. Although I think they ended up in Greece rather than Blighty so maybe the precedent isn't so good. But you could lean out of the window and sing and everything.
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[User Picture]From: drdoug
2010-04-17 04:50 pm (UTC)
Oh, and if you're hiring a coach beware of translation errors. You don't want to end up accidentally employing a guy who'll ring you up six times a day to give you motivational pep talks.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-04-17 10:05 pm (UTC)
Given we've been specified the coach has a toilet, wifi and a dvd player... no actually it's still ambiguous he may have been showing off about his flat.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-04-17 10:04 pm (UTC)
The future internet conference bus... hmm... I really hope there isn't singing.
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[User Picture]From: surliminal
2010-04-18 12:24 am (UTC)
"the back of the bus, they cannae teleport.."?

It sounds like the kind of bus where the driver would tweet to the passengers, actually.
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[User Picture]From: maradydd
2010-04-18 04:52 pm (UTC)
If you do end up in Brussels for more than, say, an hour, let me know and I can stand you a beer; Leuven's about 20 minutes by train.
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[User Picture]From: steer
2010-04-20 11:12 am (UTC)
That would be great actually but we went via Paris. As I'm funded by the EU right now, Brussels trips are a likely outcome though.
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