Trip to the USA, part 2

  • Posted on: 7 September 2004
  • By: lucas

It's now Tuesday evening 18:00 local time. The past few days were a new experience for me. Had I listened to my dear Franny a bit I would have avoided a lot of trouble.

When I arrived at the Roanoke airport last Saturday I was busy picking up my rental car when ... the credit on my credit card was not enough ! Shit Shit ! I had a complete misconception about credit cards. The $700 for the car didn't work, even half of that amount was denied (yep, I'm really stupid !). So I had to take a taxi to the hotel ($66 for the ride, lucky I had plenty cash on me). The same problems with the card in the hotel, but the Indian manager (who is a laid off US Airline employee) was very friendly and it could wait. The hotel is quite run down, old glory. The room is ok, but a bit grimy.

But the tv has 50+ channels, I watched more CSI episodes than I do in a year at home so I'm not complaining. Unfortunately the hotel is a bit far from down town. And there's even no side walk to walk down town. Yep, in the states without a car, how more of a loser can you be ?

Sunday I took a taxi down town. The actual town Blacksburg is quite small, but the VT (Virginia Tech) university is huge. Barry (my contact at the company I'm doing work for) told me it was funded with government land sales. They have everything, their own power plant, airport, hotel, lots of land and 30000 students. Big campus, nice buildings no concrete monsters but more Oxford/Cambridge like.

I spent yesterday, Labour Day, in my Hotel. Having a different pizza from the same Papa John's delivery service. I did a bit of preparing for my first day of work here. It was raining a bit, today (Tuesday) the edges of hurricane Frances are giving a lot of rain, no wind though.

The first day of work went quite well. All the equipment I sent appears to be in good order. Tomorrow two colleagues of Philips Medical Systems will come to the company as well. There will be interesting discussions !

Tonight Barry invited me to have some dinner. We will go to a 'casual dining' place. That's one whole level above the fast food restaurants, but you don't need to wear a tie. Maybe some local cuisine would be nice. I'll let you know tomorrow.