Over the years I have worked for a number of companies that say they offer training and then in reality never do. So when the day job offered to send me to Birmingham for the week, I jumped at the chance. Whereas for most people a week away, stuck in a hotel, sounds like hell, for me it’s perfect.
I train during the day, get to geocache in a new area in the evening and then write when it gets dark. For me that’s pretty close to perfection.
The only big downside was food. As I’ve previously mentioned, my current drugs severely limit what I can eat. I’m on so low a fat intake that most low fat foods are still too fatty for me. At home I’ve worked my way around this, discovering all manners of things you would never think ultra low in fat. The problem comes when you go away, because low fat is not the same as low calorie, but restaurants think they are the same. To be fair creating something tasty I can eat is next to impossible.
It took a lot of planning but I worked out that I could microwave something at the training location for lunch, and then use the kettle in the hotel room for instant porridge (only certain varieties low enough) and for a Pot Noodle type snack in the evening. I’d mix this up with the occasional Subway (because a couple of Subway sandwiches are in that category of things you wouldn’t think ultra low in fat but are).
I survived but the week of bad food is really costing me this week and has already resulted in serious drug side-effects.
I did quite a bit of walking in the city. I’m not the biggest fan of urban geocaching as most of it relies on stealth. So I set myself the goal of five caches over the week. However I managed to beat this after a lovely walk along the canal one evening. Urban decay isn’t everyone’s idea of beauty but I also got to see a bit of wildlife.
The first cache I did (in the city centre) I also found a Munzee. I’ve not done any for a year or so now and upon re-downloading the app to log my unexpected find, I saw that Birmingham is full of them. So I ended up doing some of those as well. The app’s updated since I last used it and it looks like they’ve made a lot of good improvements but still there were QR codes I could not scan… and that’s frustrating.
I also got quite a bit of writing done whilst away. My revised technique means there are some days when I’m planning rather than actually writing and that does break the daily flow a little but I’m still experimenting with process a little. What’s important is that the words seem good and overall I did quite a few.
And what’s even better was that I really enjoyed the course so aside from the food issues it was a pretty good week overall.