I had a marvelous time with the NSO touring in Spain and Germany. The concerts were very well attended and enthusiastically received, as noted by the Washington Post.
Best thing about the tour: the opportunity to play a masterpiece (Bartok's Concerto for Orchestra) with one of the finest orchestras in the world, under the marvelous conductor, Christophe Eschenbach.
Most notable element of the tour: the acoustic was superb in every hall, but different--it was really fascinating to hear the music in a slightly different way in each performance venue.
Toughest part of the tour: keeping my fingers in shape! For the most part we didn't arrive at the hall until 30-40 minutes prior to a service, and half of that time was spent tuning. To maintain dexterity I made good use of the Salzedo Conditioning Exercises, as well as those of Marilyn Costello and Marie-Claire Jamet. But I was very envious of other musicians who were able to practice in their hotel rooms!