Saturday, 15 December 2007

Fifty Nifty United States

I HAVE spent the last three days in the capital of the U S of A, Washington DC.

I mostly spent the first two days in bed.

You see the trouble is, Fiji is twelve hours ahead of the UK, and twenty ahead of Los Angeles. Our flight from Nadi, due to depart at 10.55pm Fiji time was delayed by four hours, thus we took off in what was, to me, the early hours of the following morning. I slept throughout takeoff, but after a small snack and a film I suddenly ceased to be tired, and so for most of the nine and a half hour flight I remained awake. Breakfast followed at Fijian breakfast time, which was now, to put the ensuing problems into perspective, three o'clock in the afternoon Los Angeles time, the previous day. So we took off on the 12th of December, only to land late afternoon on the 11th, the other side of the Pacific, having just had breakfast. Then, four hours later, we were in the air again, flying to Washington DC, three hours further ahead, landing three hours after taking off from Nadi, eighteen hours previously. By the time we regained consciousness in the city, having slept since arrival, it had been twenty four hours since we had eaten and it was still the 12th of December.

I'm not entirely sure my body has yet adjusted, but after two days of laziness it was time to see the city. Between the periods of narcolepsy all we had achieved so far was to see the White House, a shopping mall and a man singing to himself in Italian, so our third and final day needed to be action packed. So today we went on a whistlestop tour of one of the coolest museums on the planet (but I shan't say what it is just yet) and the National Mall, stopping off at the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument and the Capitol Building, before rapidly making our way back to our accommodation to escape the freezing cold.

Gone are the flip-flops of Fiji, in come the woolly hats and gloves for America. I may even keep the beard for added insulation.

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