Some people that do not or have not travelled as part of their job probably will not understand this, but I hate work-related travel. It's not exciting. It's not fun. It's not something to sign up for.
Granted, I haven't always felt this way about it, as pre-marriage I travelled quite a bit and enjoyed it for the most part. But now it's a different story. I miss my wife. I miss my son. I miss my own bed. I miss my church. I miss the security of home. I miss knowing that if something happens to family I could be there in a matter of minutes. I miss riding my mountain bike. I miss good Tex-Mex.
I write this from a hotel room in what seems like my home away from home the last few months: Chicago. It's a nice hotel. Nice people at the hotel. Great co-workers. And, I've spent enough time here to know how to get around easily, where restaurants are, where the nearest Starbuck's are located, and even how to efficiently navigate the parking lots at the mammoth Abbott campus. Yet, I still hate it after a few days. I'm on the 7th night of a 9 night stay and I'm way passed ready to come home. I'm to the point now where going out to eat holds ZERO appeal to me. Luckily for me, the room contains a refrigerator so I can keep some food and drink of my own and don't have to spend yet another night staring at my travel mates (our Dallas team has spent every day together for months now including 5 weeks on the road since mid December). Yet, I know more is to come...even though I have managed to get out of the June trip to Ireland due to vacation schedule.
Luckily, on the present trip, Rachael and Nolan were able to join me over the weekend and we were able to get out and see a few sites. Not only was it great to spend time with my family, but it also broke up the monotony of work. We spent Thursday evening at Wrigley Field (a dream for me), spent Saturday at the Shedd Aquarium and Navy Pier, and Sunday at the Lincoln Park Zoo. And that's the funny thing about travel; when I travel for pleasure, I thoroughly enjoy it even though a lot of the same things I hate about travel are present.
The project I'm on still has a number of months until completion and I know there will be more travel involved. I dread it. The only saving grace I have, for a period of time at least, is that when baby girl is born (yes, we are still deciding name) I should get a bit of a travel reprieve.
So, the best I can say is that I understand why I have to travel and I have to do my best to tolerate it and make it as painless as possible.
Aside: A big thank you to our neighbors, and to American Airlines, for the tickets to get Rachael and Nolan up here over the weekend.
2 days ago