On the Road

I’m in Philadelphia today, fulfilling a commitment to facilitate a meeting for a non-profit group.  I made this commitment before I accepted my new job, and negotiated an agreement to let me fulfill this obligation.

I took the train to Philly from DC.  While our train service in the U.S. is generally abysmal, especially compared with train service in Europe (or even the Ghan in Australia), let’s say, “it’s serviceable” for such a rather short distance (about 120 miles/193km).  I probably could have driven here for less money than the cost of rail fare, but when you add up the exorbitant cost for parking in the city, plus wear-and-tear on my nerves (I hate to drive on interstate highways), then using the train is the best choice, especially since I’m not in a hurry.

I will come home tonight, then leave for Seattle tomorrow.  I tell ‘ya, reminders of my years of on-the-go travel with back-to-back trips doing multiple tasks are returning quickly!  The skills I learned as a seasoned “travel warrior” have been dusted off and re-engaged.

I still dislike traveling though, for three reasons:

1. It’s a huge hassle with all the security crap and the nickle-and-diming that airlines do.  It’s just no fun any more.

2. I hate to be away from home.  I miss my partner and miss important things to me that happen while I’m gone: my nephew’s school play, seeing a concert that my partner had gotten tickets to see months ago, and a visit in DC by someone who is very close to me, but who lives in Los Angeles.

3. With my strange diet due to a chronic health condition, I always have struggles with finding foods that don’t set off … um… “challenges.”  Change in the water, etc., do not set well with me.  Plus, I’m generally not the kind of guy who likes to eat out.  I much prefer to prepare my own meals and eat at home.  

Oh well, the bright side is that I’ll get to see several colleagues who I have known for years and renew working relationships, and make new contacts too that will help with my new job.

Life is short:  be where you need to be and get the job done!