Surprise your sweetie.....

I am often asked how I deal with jet lag. The honest answer is that there is no real cure other than catching up on sleep when you can, and not overdoing it. Simple to say, but never easy to do when I am on the road—I like to explore way too much!

Dublin a few weeks back was no different. Having spent the few days prior in Italy, the travel was beginning to catch up with me. Rather than lose precious exploring time sleeping, I had intended to breakfast early, then take a energizing early morning walk.  I rose early that morning. So early, in fact, that breakfast was not yet underway at my hotel. Workers were just snapping the starched white tablecloths onto the tables, and setting them with gleaming flatware. And so, as I was trying not to be annoying to the hotel staff, I decided to wait a while for breakfast and instead, take a short walk on Grafton Street, a charming avenue, famous for its shopping.

Merchants were starting their day, and a woman working a flower stand was busily arranging and displaying her bouquets.  “Surprise your sweetie,” she winked.  "I wish I could,” I responded, “but I fear they would never look as good by the time I get them back to New York.”  The flowers truly were impressive. So, since I couldn't take one of her bouquets home to my sweetie, I decided to do the next best thing—I took a picture, instead! I told the woman that the next time I travel to Dublin, I would bring my wife.

Hungry from my early morning ramble, I headed back to my hotel breakfast buffet. Soon, I was munching a warm croissant, and scattering crumbs on the worker’s neat white table linens. As I sat and sipped my coffee, I planned my day in my head. I had to do Trinity and its great library! And, how could I not cross over the Ha’penny Bridge? Do I walk over to St. Patrick’s, or just try to rest in St. Stephen’s Green pub? 

I headed out once again, past the flower stand lady.  “Don’t forget to surprise your sweetie,” she smiled!

Walking the streets gave me renewed energy, so I decided St. Patrick’s was not too far a trek, and I'd stop at Stephen’s Green on the way back! If you know Dublin, you know it can be walked and enjoyed. There are enough places along the way to stop and have a Guinness, and perhaps some of my favorite stew. After a few hours I made my way back to the hotel, and past the flower lady as she was packing up for the day. “I am not saying a word,” she teased. 

I, too, had to pack, as I was headed home to New York the next day.

Getting off the plane at John F. Kennedy airport moments before the blizzard of all blizzards began, I happened to pass a news stand — with flowers, though admittedly not even close to the grandeur of the street stand on Grafton. The attendant caught my eye — I knew I had to surprise my sweetie!