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The plain of Spain, where the rain mainly falls. Near Toledo.

 

Usually when I go to Spain and France it’s a 10 day trip. But in an effort to shorten travel this year, I squeezed this into 7 days.  It felt like a month!  Worse, I was jet lagged until about 6pm Friday and came alive and became my normal creative genius self just as we said goodbye.    I am still looking for a better solution to help me sleep on planes and to overcome jet lag.

Spain program director Javier, left, and Ángel Expósito, our morning guy at lunch.  Expósito is one of the best presenters I work with anywhere.  He is smart, eager, passionate, and has a lot of experience.  He was embedded with US troops in Afghanistan, has interviewed Castro, and ran a major national Spanish daily newspaper before joining us.

Spain program director Javier, left, and Ángel Expósito, our morning guy at lunch. Expósito is one of the best presenters I work with anywhere. He is smart, eager, passionate, and has a lot of experience. He was embedded with US troops in Afghanistan, has interviewed Castro, and ran a major national Spanish daily newspaper before joining us.

 

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Expósito with the Spanish health minister to his right and newsreader Paloma Tortajada to his left.

I could do a whole blog just on accommodations.   This is one of the nicest places I stay, a boutique hotel in Madrid. As you can see from the distance from the bed to the walls, "boutique" is the operative word here.  Good thing I'm barely in the room.

I could do a whole blog just on accommodations. This is one of the nicest places I stay, a boutique hotel in Madrid. As you can see from the distance from the bed to the walls, “boutique” is the operative word here. Good thing I’m barely in the room. Last year I saw Penelope Cruz in this hotel.

 

Paris last week was cold and rainy   Wait. Paris is always cold and rainy except for when it’s hot and miserable.  Funny how such a pretty place seems to just have two seasons.

The view from my hotel room in Paris. Not bad!  But about as close as I got to really seeing Paris.  It was just radio studios and conference rooms except for this one moment.

The view from my hotel room in Paris. Not bad! But about as close as I got to really seeing Paris. It was just radio studios and conference rooms except for this one moment.

My obligatory picture of going to work on the Paris Metro.  Last year I sat across from an assault on the metro and actually captured a picture of it.  I'll post it in the near future.

My obligatory picture of going to work on the Paris Metro. Last year I sat across from an assault on the metro and actually captured a picture of it. I’ll post it in the near future.

 

Coming back I flew right into one of this season’s crazy winter storms. Normally the ride home from Europe is 16 hours.  This time it was 26 hours and 9 minutes from gate to gate.  I have to say American Airlines was very good at moving my connecting flight four times to keep me from being bumped altogether.  But it was exhausting!

Queens, New York, flying through the snow.

Queens, New York, flying through the snow.