And sometimes I feel that I need literally just one minute to be alone in the room, to “come to terms” with the physical location. Sometimes it is no more than being allowed to sort through my bag of tricks and plug in the computer, or to make sure that I have me notes in correct sequence.
Most of the times this comes automatically as my host asks “Can I get you anything? A coffee?”, and I always respond “Yes please, cream and sugar”, the extras designed to spin out the absence by an extra 30 seconds.
But if that doesn’t work, I pull out the sheet of paper that has my script or agenda on, and ask, ever-so-politely, “Would you like to make a copy of this for yourself? It’s the script I’ll be running through”, and always, off they go, for anything from 2 to 5 minutes, depending on the popularity of the local copier.
(Takes deep breath)