Tuesday, October 14

Reminders of a Road Warrior Life

It feels like a lifetime ago, but at one point in time I was a Change Consultant that specialized in major ERP integrations. In other words, I was a know-it-all consultant that went into companies and assisted with the implementation of multi-million dollar software packages. I was paid crazy money to develop and deliver training, and to work with managers to strategize plans for an effective and cost-efficient accounting or human resources systems integration.

Along with that crazy money came the need for crazy travel. There just aren’t that many companies spending upwards of $20 million for new software in any one city, so to really make a living at it, I was frequently on the road. I was, in fact, a Road Warrior, traveling to as many as three cities in a week, forever flying out on Sundays and returning home on Friday evenings. I liked it.

Then came September 11 and with it came new complications with travel and a downturn in the ERP market. Those factors coupled with the stress of constantly seeking a “next project” started to get to Mr. Husband and I, so I finally sought out and accepted “typical” full-time employment. For a while I still traveled, at times as much as 25% of the time.

Then came Alexis, and I halted all travel. Until recently. In my current role, a little travel is required. Rarely is it more than a quick run to a city and back in the same day. In fact, tonight is the very first time in Alexis’ entire life that I will have to spend the night away from home without her. Mr. Husband is on his own with the Toddler, while I am thrust back into the world of airports and travel.

Somewhere along the way, I had forgotten that airports are a people watcher’s dream. In the brief time I spent in Atlanta for a layover, I chuckled at an older gentleman as he carefully waddled, trying to not spill his coffee. He donned brown loafers, knee-high athletic socks, wrinkled linen shorts, an expensive looking hounds tooth sports jacket, and atop his balding head was a black Indiana Jones style hat, with the strings tied tightly below his jiggly chin. As I exited the ladies room, I grinned at a man as he stared in disbelief, trying to reconcile whether he was walking into the ladies room or I was walking out of the mens room. I think he might still be standing in that short hallway, trying to work through his confusion. There were the usual Obvious Tourists weighted down by bag after bag as they stop to read every. single. sign. trying to figure out which way is up. Then there was my favorite, a proud papa who bragged to a total stranger that his 15 years 4 month old son was destined for the NFL, having already reached 240 pounds and 6’ 4”. I may have teased him that I thought only women tracked their childrens ages down to the month, if I hadn't just been a eavesdropper to the conversation.

I had forgotten just how fun it is to sit back in an airport, laugh, and watch the world go by.

It’s more fun to sit back, laugh, and watch her go by.

27 comments:

  1. poor mama.

    enjoy your people-watching ... and then return to your baby.

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  2. Safe travels my lovely. And it will be good for them to have some alone time together.

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  3. As cheesey as it sounds, I bet you all appreciate each other much more once you're back. Geat home safe, yeah.

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  4. It sounds like you are making the most of your time away...and appreciating your life at home when you get back. As it should be.

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  5. It's amazing how our world shrinks when we have kids. Our global vision is suddenly focused right there in the crib. And we're good with that.

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  6. I used to be a world traveler and people watcher too. I miss those days but agree that watching the little people is more fun.

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  7. What was that song..."Back to life...back to reality!" Enjoy the people watching - one of MY favorite pasttimes!

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  8. ImpostorMom12:20 PM

    OMG you were in ATL!? So close yet so far away at the same time. :P Safe travels.

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  9. I love to people watch,too. And,as I go to airports only to pick up or drop off (no wise cracks wumman), I love to people watch there.

    Also, you SOOO better looking than Mel...just saying.

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  10. It's funny how much life changes after the little ones come along! And the things you once thought you loved seem so much less now. It's nice to touch base with that old world occasionally, but I'm with you...I'd rather watcher HER go by!

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  11. you pretty much described my husbands life before the move to idaho. it wasn't so horrible until we became parents... then it really was hell...
    you made a beautiful choice... So sorry that the first night without her came due to work, and while she is still so young but I'm so glad that it isn't a constant thing now.

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  12. awww i feel you. i hate being away from my babies :(

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  13. I love people watching. And your right, airports are the perfect place for that.

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  14. I used to travel with my job a fair amount too, even after my first was born.

    But NEXT WEEK will be my first time away from my baby as I go on a girls trip to Napa. Can you say bittersweet?

    Love your airport observations...

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  15. I do the same thing at Walmart. It's the redneck version!

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  16. Did you know you had a pop-up thingy that blocking half of this post.

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  17. I love airports for the same reason :) If you ever come to the Stamford/NYC area, let's grab a drink......

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  18. SO TRUE!!!

    Airports ARE a people watcher’s dream!!!

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  19. I love airports, but traveling alone does not sound fun. But, hey, did you at least get a great night's sleep?!

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  20. Hope you have a decent time. Just remember to enjoy a shower in peace for once (or maybe a bath?!)

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  21. I'm with CC - make sure to take a dump by yourself. With the door open. Hawt!

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  22. PS - was that first paragraph in English? That is all.

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  23. Absence makes the heart grow fonder, right? At least a tiny bit of absence.

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  24. For the record.... that 15 year 4 month old, 240 pound 6'4" probably lineman? He's the one that MY 15 year 4 month old, 160 pound 5'11" linebacker is going to run right through to take out the QB he's protecting.

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  25. I used to travel a lot for work too. Like you, I halted it all once the Pumpkin was born.

    Now, I'm debating whether or not I want to push for going to a conference in January. As much as I love traveling, it's hard to leave the little one.

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  26. I hate travelling for work now too, thankfully I only go about once a year.

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  27. awww I'm glad you made it back safely to your wee one too. I LOVE people watching and body language etc...which is why I'm all over Survivor. I luv me some Survivor!

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