Wednesday, November 19, 2008


I was on a plane again when I wrote this the first time, in hand, in a notebook; heading to Chicago. It seems like there has been too much travel of late. There are far too many downsides to travel to mention (long hours, getting sick, missing rides, and most importantly missing family) in this post, plus that is not the point of the post. Clearly these issues are a drag with business travel and make time gone from home tough, I’ve always made it an important part of my trips to embrace the travel in any way I can.

I have peers who have never seen Central Park, never been to the Art Institute in Chicago, never walked the Upper West Side, and never strolled to the top of Coit Tower. I have seen all these areas and make sure every time I enjoy the cities I go to.

I look at business travel as a chance to learn and enjoy opportunities I’d never have on my own budget. This morning when I was taking Seamus to school before leaving he asked if I “was going on a business trip”? I told him it was, and that all my trips are really business trips. I wondered why and asked. He said I never talk about work from the trips. He said I talk about what I saw and did. It seems in his mind that I don’t take business trips like other parents I take trips to enjoy other cities. When I was in New York a few weeks ago I sent Seamus a picture of 42nd and Broadway, as we had just read a book that took place there. I guess he thought that was why I went to New York.

On this trip to Chicago I am traveling with a peer; the other day we were looking at a map of Chicago and I was telling him where places were in respect to our hotel. He wondered how I knew so much about the city. I didn’t really have an answer, but I guess given the choice I’ll spend any down time walking around a city and enjoying it.

For me it is about priorities. I have to prioritize my work, my family, cycling and any other interests I have. I know this weekend I’ll spend Saturday with Seamus at the zoo. I know I’ll get up at dawn and ride in the coldest part of the day to get in a ride. I know I’ll enjoy a nice dinner with Ade and Seamus.

When I landed today I walked around Chicago. I showed my peer Grant Park, the Wrigley Building, the Tribune Building (both of which are architectural gems), the Water Tower and the Hancock building. We walked for about two hours enjoying the city before our commitments became pressing. We all only have so many chances to embraces our opportunities, be they travel, bike riding or family. Work is a means to the end so I’ll make sure to enjoy the time I’m gone from higher priorities by learning about new places. I’ll live with the confusion I’ve caused Seamus; making him think I travel to send him pictures instead of business travel.

1 comment:

Adrienne said...

isn't he your sidekick more than your peer? :-) Seamus and I miss you.