Sunday, July 18, 2004

Travel Travails
I returned this weekend from a week-long trip to Virginia.  The trip content was great:  the work part was very productive;  I had a fun dinner with team members;  I saw an old high school friend for the first time in years and met her charming little girl;  I had a really nice visit with my parents and grandmother;  I got a little sun;  I had some really good runs - the most running milage I've logged in a week in a very long time.
What wasn't so great were my travel details. 
On past trips, I've taken the direct red eye flight from Seattle to D.C. and then driven the 2.5 hour trip to Richmond (work day) or Nomini (weekend day).  I take the red eye so that I don't waste an entire day traveling, and then find myself awake past midnight every night of the trip as I slowly transition from pacfic to eastern time.  Since I've been doing this every couple of months for the last year or two, I have accumulated a lot of frequent flier miles and am familiar with all pertinent travel details:  which gate I leave from and the nearest place to get snacks;  the exact gate I arrive into and the location of the Starbucks with the shortest line; how /where to get my rental car; what time to leave for the airport (traffic on the roads and in the airport)... the list goes on.
This time, I went with the slightly cheaper corporate preferred airline option into Richmond with a connection in Chicago.  At least I was booked to travel through Chicago.  Due to some bad weather, however, I never actually saw O'Hare airport.  Instead I was delayed 8 hours on the trip out, flying the day trip through Dallas, and was delayed 5 hours on the return trip, also through DFW.  The thing about being stuck in the Richmond airport is that you just don't have many options.   At least I wasn't traving with a baby or to Beruit (like other fellow passengers);  my needs were pretty simple.
Yes, simple needs, like a hotel room that hasn't been flooded out.  Note to self:  next time I enter a hotel room that smells a little odd, do not pass go, do not unpack and then drive far away to see a friend returning at 11 pm only to notice that the room still smells odd, but get ready for bed anyway hoping that the room with be fine until I discover that the carpet next to the window and A.C. is soaked and realize that I really should probably be in a dry room that doesn't smell odd and now I have to pack everything up again and change rooms wandering the hotel in my t-shirt, boxers, tivas, and retainer hoping that I won't run into anyone.  Yeah, I should just change rooms at 5:30 pm when I'm in professional clothing and nothing is falling out of my suitcase.
It's good to be home.


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