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One move to America, one surprise pregnancy and a lot of fun later.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Irish are coming – better late than never!

“I drink tequila and she talks dirty in Spanish….la la la”
I have put those song lyrics in to remind my RISI pals of that lovely little Irish group Crystal Swing to get them in the mood for my blog. If you don’t know what I am talking about then check them out on Youtube.


Well, my friend Irish Sharon was coming over from Glasgow to visit me for the weekend. She was going to a conference in Orlando, Florida so booked flights for her and her boyfriend to come over a few days early and to come via Washington DC to visit us. I was so looking forward to her visit as it is the first one from my friends back home and I was just looking forward to catching up with her.

I met Sharon when she started working with Jarlath years and years ago at a company called Life Technologies. Both of them (and our flat mate at the time Richard) worked as Distributor Sales Managers. Sharon came over from Kodak. At the time Life Tech was not the most popular place to work which was reflected in the fact that there was a night out almost every Friday night for someone’s leaving do. Through these nights out, myself and Sharon became good friends. We then started to go to Salsa dancing classes together and became friends outwith Life Tech and Jarlath. Sharon is one of the sweetest women in the world but can be rather ditsy at times (sorry Shaz but you know its true!).

Then Life Tech decided to make all three of the positions redundant. It was very sudden, they all went into work one day not knowing a thing and I got a phone call to tell me that Jarlath, Sharon and Richard had all been made Redundant and asked to leave the premises immediately. A bit of a shock and they all decanted to the pub to try and get their heads around it. Anyway it was all highly irregular and because of that they got a decent payout to sign a document to not sue the company for unfair dismissal. Richard and Jarlath went on to get new jobs but Sharon decided to have a change in lifestyle and used her settlement to put herself through an MBA course. After she successfully completed her course she then wrote her business plan and started up her own business – Biochannel Partners.


It is now becoming successful after many years although Sharon will admit herself it took a bit longer than planned as she procrastinated about direction at first. So she is now a successful Business woman and has a lovely boyfriend called Frank, so life is pretty good for her at the moment.

They were supposed to be flying into Washington late on Thursday afternoon but they managed to miss their flights. When Frank checked their itinerary instead of looking at the flight time he took note of the trip duration so thought the flight was taking off at 15.40. It in fact took off in the morning while they were still pottering around their flat – a rather large numpty moment methinks.

So they duly rebooked for the Friday to come via New York but, unfortunately, there was bad weather in New York so their flight was originally delayed for 8 hours and then finally cancelled. Note to all – there is always drama around the Keatings these days when it comes to travel.
They again rebooked but it seemed that the only flights they could get were later ones on the Saturday and they would not get into Washington until very late on Saturday night. As they were then flying out early Sunday afternoon we decided that they should just try and get flights directly to Orlando and come and visit us another time. Highly disappointing but not much we could do about it.

Jarlath and I went out for some tapas on the Friday night and then just chilled around on Saturday running some errands until I got a surprise text from Sharon at 4.00p.m. to say they were in New York and had managed to get an early flight and would be in Washington within the hour. How lovely, so I jumped in the car (Jarlath was out on his road bike) and went off to pick them up from Reagan airport. Flight arrived early, pick up went ok and we were home in no time.

All had a drink and a quick catch up and then went up into Bethesda to get some dinner. As we had nowhere booked we tried a couple of restaurants which had long waits but we decided on one place and just sat at the bar until a table became free. It took some time so it was quite late when we ate but had a lovely dinner – slightly overpriced and the waiters were a bit stuck up – but lovely as we were with good friends.

Sunday came and we all got up nice and early to make the most of our time together. We went out for some brunch to the Tastee diner – a cute little American diner in the fifties style- and then drove into downtown DC to have a walk around the Lincoln memorial and the White House. It was a lovely sunny, cold day and was just nice to chat and walk. Unfortunately, we then had to take them to the airport for their flight onto Orlando. So a short but very sweet visit.

They are going to have so much fun in Orlando and they have the conference but then have a couple of days to do the Disney resort. They are going to Universal studios to see the new Harry Potter feature. I am very jealous and have asked for loads of photos which I will try and share later.

Anyway, a fun but short visit from a good friend with promises to come back for a proper visit later in the year. Xx

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