Yesterday I left for my first overnight business trip in about a year. I am in Chicago, at Blogher, and this is the first time that I am going to be away from my daughter for a few nights in a row. I traveled when I was in venture, but I squeezed most trips into just one day.
When I got to the airport, my flight was cancelled and I had 4 hours to do… nothing. My WiFi connection was misbehaving so there was no checking emails or doing work. My natural inclination was to get annoyed at this but when I came to my senses I realized that I had 4 hours to do NOTHING! I couldn’t go back home to be with my daughter (she was in daycare anyway), so there was no guilt involved, and I couldn’t very well get the flight to take off any sooner. I was on a 4-hour vacation.
I went to the bookstore and bought two books -one, a trashy political thriller, another, something I’d wanted to read for a while. Then I went to the food court and bought too much food that was not good for me. I settled into a seat in the waiting area and for the next few hours I just ate and read and people watched. It would be a lie to say that I was completely relaxed - I’m not sure I know how that feels anyway - but it was close.
I read an article before about about working moms enjoying business trips because of the chance to get away from the daily juggle and get some extra sleep. Penelope Trunk, our Career Contributor, recently wrote a great article about traveling to promote her book. The title, Tips for moms with laptops: Dance on the bed, gives a hint of what she wrote about. She left her house feeling guilty and conflicted about traveling and not seeing her kids. By the end of the day she was dancing on her bed and ordering room service. This business trip was her little vacation. Now I know what she meant! (No room service for me, but dancing on the bed? Considering it.)
Do you travel for business? Do you look forward to it as a way to get a break and catch up on sleep?Â Do tell!
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