It’s so glamorous, this travelling life.
I have made a resolution to stop complaining – but…..
I get to bed at 11.00pm, after my 17-hour day – and get to wake at 2.00am to the sound of noisy revellers in the corridor outside my hotel room.
Needless to say, I cannot get back to sleep in this crappy West End hotel room – cramped, stuffy and claustrophobic.
After 90 minutes of thoughts in the dark, I decide to get up at 3.30am and put my pants in the trouser press attached to the wall inside the wardrobe.
As I release the lever, the whole unit just collapses to the ground in a heap – its broken and nobody has taken the trouble to report or repair the fault.
And another thing…
Last night, we returned to our hotel to discover that the dinner menus I had painstakingly distributed to our delegates were useless as no dinner reservation had been made at the hotel.
The restaurant manager did his level best but it was a lost cause.
We descended into the basement “restaurant” at 7.30pm to discover what looked like the dining room in a rest home, with the overpowering smell of a fish market.
“Dinner” was a hot buffet of school dinners.
My heart sinks as everything we have invested into the afternoon – on brand standards – collapses.
After a short discussion with Simon and Ernie, I walk down Bolsover Street, about 75 yards, and turn the corner to see a traditional Italian trattoria on a nearby corner.
I approach the manager with my unusual request – “desserts, champagne and coffee for 19?” – and he replies “no problem” – the angels have finally taken pity on me.
We march our delegates out of the basement, down the street and into an environment which suits our style.
A disproportionate moment of disappointment is transformed into delight – and the point is well made on all concerned.
It’s actually been a great day professionally – my meetings have been inspired – but what we have had to go through to get there………
At 5.45am the night porter arrives with a plank of wood and an old broken ironing board cover and suggests that if I lean the plank against the desk I will be able to press a shirt – when I get wifi I will send you a photo of this ridiculous arrangement from my iphone.
This is London’s West End and goodness only knows what this room is costing.
This travelling life sucks – and must change.
My sense of humour is expired and my health is wearing out.


Published by

Chris Barrow

Chris Barrow has been active as a consultant, trainer and coach to the UK dental profession for over 20 years. As a writer, his blog enjoys a strong following and he is a regular contributor to the dental press. Naturally direct, assertive and determined, he has the ability to reach conclusions quickly, as well as the sharp reflexes and lightness of touch to innovate, change tack and push boundaries. In 2014 he appeared as a “castaway” in the first season of the popular reality TV show “The Island with Bear Grylls”. His main professional focus is as Coach Barrow, providing coaching and mentorship to independent dentistry.