Friday, August 24, 2007

i’m back . . . sort of . . . .

I awoke in Chengdu, CN at 5 a.m. Saturday and I arrived back in Canton at 12:40 a.m. Sunday after 32 hours of traveling. I slept maybe an hour or so on the planes, trying to stay awake so I could sleep at more normal NNY times when home.

Anyway, that was the plan.

Well, I did get seven hours of sleep until I awoke. Good news: I went to church and I only slept an hour on Sunday afternoon. Bad news: I was tired, grouchy, and extremely stupid.

I was asked to play tennis, doubles, Sunday night. I hadn’t played in 15 years, had eight hours of sleep in the past 48, and my body thought it was 12 time zones away. I gave it a go anyway.

It was not a pretty sight.

It was no surprise I had no serve. However, I had trouble hitting the ball. I had great form, but I was swinging the racket and missing clean by six to ten inches. On one of my first serves, I tossed the ball up, swung the racket, swished, and the ball came down, hitting me on the top of my head.

My play at the net was similarly impressive. There were a few times when I looked back to see my partner on his hands and knees in the back court. I thought maybe he was injured. No, he was laughing so hard that he couldn’t stand.

Despite my play, I had fun and we, the over-fifty guys, lost a close match in three sets (3-6, 6-3, 5-7) to the under-thirty guys.

I don’t remember Monday. I dozed all day and all evening. Of course, I had trouble sleeping at night. I have not had a really good, uninterrupted night’s sleep yet this week.

I managed our finances during the past few days. I spread work that usually takes an hour or two over three days. This pace was not in the plan.

I did put in a full day at the office yesterday, Thursday. I filled out an expense report for the China-trip grant. This was an intellectual challenge, not only due to my continuing jet lag but also because most of the receipts were written in Chinese with no English. Looks like I’m a few hundred over budget, which I probably will have to eat. I don’t feel too bad since the international and in-China airfares jumped by over $800 between the grant application and when we purchased them. It could have been a lot worse. We were saved by having a couple of wonderful Chinese women on the team who didn’t hesitate to argue and fuss over a couple of yuan (27 cents).

Maybe I’ll be able to sleep tonight . . . .

Be blessed.

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