Business Travel, Travel Narrative

For Better or Worse: A Life of Constant Travel

Sometimes constant travel can be confusing.  Like entering the charming mountain town of Florida, in western Massachusetts.

Sometimes constant travel can be confusing. Like entering the charming mountain town of Florida, in western Massachusetts.

Having effectively inverted my life–I’m officially away more than I am home–I get a lot of questions from friends and loved ones about how, exactly, ‘I do it’.  I don’t know how you do it, they say (or text or email or comment or tweet), presumably while shaking their heads.  The secret is–it’s really easy.

Five Ways Constant Travel Makes Life Better

5.  You’re already getting on a plane.  In two weeks, I’m flying to Dallas for work.  And then I’m flying directly to Boston, also for work.  I was given the opportunity to attend a conference (to which I was very much looking forward) that begins the following day–but it is in Chicago.  I assumed that attending said conference was out of the question.  But then I realized–I’d have to fly home from Boston anyway.  If I’m going to get on a plane, why not fly to Chicago?  Conference, here I come!

4. Dust bunnies don’t matter.  I used to be an effing model of domesticity.  My pillows were always fluffed, my plants watered and perky, my floors swiffered.  My towels were hung in the bathroom with care, always folded properly, always matching.  It was exhausting.  Right now I’m sitting at a desk piled with paperwork, computer cords snaked around my potted orchid.  And I could not care less; after all, I’m leaving again in 48 hours.

3.  Grocery shopping sucks.  And I don’t really have to do it anymore.  Bonus.  Can I tell you how awesome it is to just not care that you are out of toilet paper?  It’s pretty awesome.

2.  Nothing is ever lost.  Looking for your favorite sweater?  Your best (or in my case, only) pair of black capris?  They are in one of two places–the laundry or the suitcase.  Better, getting dressed in the morning is a breeze when you have a choice of this or…nothing else.  Because you only packed this.

1. Practice makes perfect.  I think the reason people imagine constant travel to be such a pain and burden is because they are imagining what travel is like for them–the normal person who flies or drives long distances maybe once a year.  They can’t imagine going through all of that work and effort once a week.  And neither can I.  Because for me, it isn’t work and effort.  Its normal.  It’s Tuesday.

Four Ways Constant Travel Makes Life Worse

4.  Major life overhauls are difficult.  I just returned from what I’m thinking will be a life-changing stay at a fabulous destination spa.  And all I want to do is continue eating bran muffins topped with nonfat yogurt, bananas, and flax seed for breakfast every morning.  I want to join a gym.  But I can’t do those things because I’m leaving again the day after tomorrow.

3.  Beauty is an issue.  You know all of those little things you do that make you look better?  Like haircuts and eyebrow waxes (come on, you know you do it)?  It is often difficult to fit them in to the short time I’m home.  And don’t get me started on doctor appointments; that’s at the bottom of my list (and how I ended up at a clinic in northern Ontario, afraid I had pneumonia.  I did not.) Health and beauty on the road is a challenge.  But did you know that people review nail salons on Yelp?  They totally do.  And for them, I am extremely grateful.

2.  I am so confused. On a recent road trip, a checkout girl at a gas station asked me if I had a rewards card.  I politely said not, but what I thought was: oh sweetie, a rewards card?  I don’t even know what state I’m in!  And speaking of gas stations: there’s that awkward moment when you emerge from one, look around, and realize you don’t know what make, model, or even color car to look for.  Thank goodness for keys with buttons that make headlights flash.

1.  I miss my mommy.  And my nana and pappy and father and friends and friends’ babies.  That doesn’t ever go away.

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