Start of a journey…

10 05 2010

Good morning all,

In January of 2009 I began a journey, with the unwavering support of my wife Cindy, that will end (hopefully) with receiving a Masters in Business Administration from The College of William & Mary, Mason School of Business. It has been an amazing 4 semesters and on Thursday we head to Asia as a part of our Global Strategy class. I will be making the trip from Washington Dulles, through Minneapolis and Narita and will land in Singapore at 12:50am local time on Saturday morning.

Part of our school work requires us to share our experiences in a journal, so my plan is to use the journal of 2010, a blog. I will post pictures and updates as I can. If you have any suggestions on what to do in my off time or questions about the culture or the cities I am in, please let me know. Comments, Blackberry Messenger, and e-mail are the best way to reach out.

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10 05 2010
Jim Craig

Australia – May 8-10th (i.e. Day 1) (this post doesn’t include the pics that I imbedded in my blog).

Road Trip! – Lori, Robin, Wayne & I (2/3 of MBA Team Richmond 2) meet at Robin’s community pool area. Lori calls to say she’s running late (no surprise), but makes it on time (for her – 11:32). We drive to Dulles, even though her Garmin keeps telling us that we’re stupid. 8 hour flight to SF on an empty plane because of European Ash – yeah!!! Leg room upgrades!
We lived through a 3 hour layover in SF with a nice Mexican food in the Int’l terminal. Next is a 15 hour flight to Sydney. Flight empty, we each claimed a 3 or 4 seat stretch of empty seats. Lifted the arm rest bars, and slept from 4-10 hours (me about 5). Saw an Aussie woman and an Asian guy fight over where “the line” was in their shared row of seats. Footsie gone ugly! Sore backs from the arm rest slots, then every 40 minutes, we get a “BING – please fasten your seatbelts” every time we hit turbulence. Seat belt Nazi’s with flashlights in the eyes. I finally seat belted my leg to the 3rd seat in my row of 4 and nobody messed with me (because I growled when they got close). Arrived at Sydney 7am, felt like happy hour time back home (Mothers day dinner time Sunday). Line to get passport checked, line to get customs form checked, line to get checked for illegal produce.
A Quantas China & Singapore flight came in, and the line was mostly Asians. Lori counted 14 young couples all dressed in matched clothes. Wayne and I think it’s the female part of the couple that insists on that, and an extremely whipped guy saying “Hai Mamasan” (or however you say “Yes Dear” in their language). They looked something like this (Gary & Heather’s picture from NASCAR weekend):

Maybe Zara should spend more time searching for the next big fashion at NASCAR nation?
We waited in another lng line – for Taxi’s. Made sure blackberry worked, wife worried less. Went to hotel for a BLESSED shower, then wandered down to the Circular Quay…
Circular Quay (Key) @ Sydney w/ Opera House
Got a few ham & cheese croissants for me & Wayne. Brought back to hotel, bumped into him on the way. Found the ladies, went back to the Quay, got bloody Mary’s & them breakfast.
Wayne, Robin, Lori @ Quay
Decided to make a plan and chose to hit the zoo. Took the Ferry across the harbor to see the animals – mostly Aussie.

Mostly Extinct Bird ??? Crocodile

Imu Red Kangaroo – tenderloin-less
Came back to hotel. Now it’s Monday 2pm. We’ve slept 5-8 hours since Friday PM. 2 hour power nap. Ran down to quay for dinner. I had kangaroo tenderloin in red wine & pepper sauce (notice lack of tenderloin in picture above). I picked my own cut. (just kidding – zoo picture).
Other observations: They drive on the other side of the road (no problem), but if you WALK on the wrong side of the sidewalk here you get the hairy eyeball. Don’t go through the doorways or halls on the US side. Walk how you drive. We saw several women pull a breast out and breastfeed like it’s no big deal. I agree, Susan nursed until Marina was almost 2, but it’s a bit of a shock to the western viewpoint, I think. “Take the piss” will be discussed later, but it’s funny.
Debated politics with the team (they ganged up on the lone voice of Barack), had fun, now, it’s bedtime. Tomorrow… Blue Mountains (Grand Canyon of Australia). ZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzz

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