Beep. The time is 3:30am. Why is my phone making that hideous noise? Oh yeah. I’ve got a trip today, which means it’s time to get out of bed. The good news is I packed the night before so I only have a few things to do to get ready. The bad news is I packed late and didn’t get in bed until midnight, so I’m going on 3 hours sleep. Luckily the Home Warrior programmed the coffee because I’m gonna need it.
It’s quiet in our house at this time of morning. The Home Warrior, Mini Warrior, and Dog Warrior are fast asleep. Oh, what I wouldn’t give to be back in bed as well. One of the hardest things about traveling is leaving my family. I try to tell myself it will go by fast, but it’s hard to trick myself into believing this with so much work ahead. The Home Warrior sends me pictures and videos throughout the day of their activities, which gives me the connection to home I need to get me through.
It’s 4am and time to drive to the airport. Roads are about as quiet as the house this time of the morning. I often find myself looking for signs of life just to reassure myself I’m not the only person up this early. As you may recall, however, this particular drive was more of an adventure than I’m used to. I forgot my wallet and only realized this after already driving halfway to the airport. Luckily the Home Warrior answered his phone at 4:30am, found my wallet, and met me outside for a handoff. After a frantic drive back to the airport I rushed through security (thanks to TSA Pre-check) and made it to my seat to wait for takeoff to Dallas. From Dallas I flew to Newark, where I spent the day handling business. Before I knew it I was on my way back to the airport.
At the airport it was near takeoff time, but there was no sign of our plane. That was because our plane was a ten row propeller plane, literally too small to see from my angle in the boarding area. I knew the plane was going to be small but wasn’t prepared for a propeller plane. I wondered if others were surprised as well. It was a loud flight (with a scary takeoff) but miraculously my noise canceling headphones along with my White Noise app allowed me to zonk out for the flight to Philly.
From Philadelphia I flew to my final destination for the day which in North Carolina. Upon arriving at my hotel it was nearly midnight. I was exhausted. This had me asking myself: Why do I put myself through all of this? Besides the obvious answers of “it’s my job” and “it’s how I help support our family”, why do I choose to be a business traveler?
The answer is not an easy one. The points are certainly nice, but there are other ways of getting points through various credit card offers. Seeing all the different cities across America is a treat, but rarely do I get to experience what a city truly has to offer beyond a hotel and airport. We talk a lot about ways to make business travel better and easier, but rarely the motivation behind leaving our friends and families to get on planes headed across the country or world.
After thinking about it I found myself going back to one solid good reason for why I choose to be a business traveler: the people.
I love people. I love seeing other people on my drive to the airport, I love meeting people where I work and on planes. I love people watching when I’m waiting to board. I love seeing smiles on people’s faces, and hearing all the funny things people say along the way. Sure, there are points where I don’t love people (like when I’m desperately trying to get through security!) but all in all it’s the people that keep me doing what I do. And once my job is done, and travel is complete, I go home. And I go home to the people I love the most, my family.
Readers, why did you choose a job where you travel? What do you like about being a business traveler?
Have a travel question or suggestion? Send it to RoadWarriorette @ gmail.com.
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