What I Learned on Travel Last Week

Some random lessons learned from my recent business trip:

  1. Taco Bell is not open at 5:30 in the morning, even though you thought they should be since they are open at 1 or 2 in the morning and now serve breakfast.  Why wouldn’t they just stay open 24/7?
  2. Spending nearly an hour standing in line at security will convince you that, yes, it really is important to get to the airport two hours before your flight.
  3. Sometimes you get the full body scan when you go through security.  Other times, they randomly let you go through the priority side, which allows you to leave your shoes and jewelry on.
  4. Sometimes you get lucky and get a full suite complete with a living room and couch while your coworkers get regular ole rooms.
  5. Sometimes all it takes to get a good night’s sleep is to pull the refrigerator out from under the counter and unplug it.  It’s best to move it back before housekeeping arrives.
  6. Nutella cheesecake from Fazoli’s is worth every penny.
  7. It truly is possible to eat out too much.
  8. People can’t hide their quirks when you spend a week together, even if you aren’t sharing a room.
  9. While you can take an empty water bottle through security, they will not let you drink the water that you forgot was in your water bottle after they’ve scanned it.  Your only choices are to let them throw it away or go back out of the secure area.
  10. Your desire to continue forward will override your desire to have a water bottle.
  11. You will later regret not having a water bottle.
  12. Your Kindle will keep a charge much longer than you expect when it reaches the state that warns your battery is low.  Long enough, at least, for an hour and a half flight.
  13. Even if you’ve never really traveled by yourself, there are actually plenty of signs at airports to get you where you are going if you just slow down and look for them.  And if that fails, the people working there are friendly and helpful.
  14. Some people apparently expect the bus driver to exit the bus and take their suitcase onto the bus for them, even though they have only the one suitcase and no small children running amuck and the suitcase has a tall handle and wheels and the owner of the suitcase was apparently able to maneuver it all the way to the bus stop just fine.
  15. The bus driver apparently anticipates these surprisingly inept people and accommodates them.
  16. You will feel sorry for the bus driver as he struggles to rebuckle and you will surreptitiously stare at the woman and wonder if it’s the high heels that make her require assistance.
  17. You were unexpectedly wise to take a picture of the sign indicating your section and row in remote parking.  But when you return, you will almost forget that you did that and rummage through your purse looking for the scrap of paper you hope you jotted it down on first.
  18. That NPR member station fundraising campaign that was driving you crazy when you left on your trip will still be going on when you get back.
  19. You’ll decide that music suits you better anyway.
  20. As soon as you start to feel confident about your ability to maneuver in busy big city traffic, you will get lost.
  21. If you are excited to get home, you will encounter a traffic jam.
  22. Life with three children will overwhelm you when you return but that broad smile on your momma’s boy’s face when he sees that you are home will stick with you forever.

6 thoughts on “What I Learned on Travel Last Week

    • Tell me about it. Although apparently it depends on the person since Melanie S. reported that she was allowed to chug hers. I really can’t come up with a sound logical reason for the rule if they are willing to hand it back to me on one side of the checkpoint but not the other.

  1. I can attest that at least 18 of these are most certainly true! Two of them I have no experience with (no children to come home to and no desire to eat at TacoBell ever), the other two turned out differently for me (I have waaaaay too much experience driving in big city commuter traffic, and for some reason security let me chug the entire bottle of water I had forgotten about…which I immediately regretted because then I knew I’d have to use the airplane bathroom!).
    What a great list. So many of these observations really struck a chord with me, like how the coworkers can’t hide quirks and the entitled lady in heels who is suddenly helpless with her own suitcase. I had a good chuckle at that. And the NPR Member drive. I’m betting you probably have the pledge drive phone number memorized (without intending to do so), don’t you?

    • You know, I eyed the water level in that bottle before offering to chug it and decided that maybe I could handle it. Turns out to be a very good thing that I didn’t since just the sips from the fountain were enough to have me squirming in my seat by the end of the flight!

      And actually, I don’t have the phone number memorized because for the last 3 or 4 years, I’ve promptly changed the channel. We *are* members so I see no reason to listen. Unless Ira Glass is talking – he makes it fun. But the local people? Not so much.

      • That’s too bad about the local NPR people. We have so many great ones here in New Hampshire and Boston. I have several favorites. I also like to listen when I go to the Dakotas and Minnesota, etc. It is really interesting to me how different the reporting priorities are, and I got such a kick out of it the first time I heard the farm report! Here we get technology stock prices; in Minnesota it’s pork bellies and corn. My favorite is hearing the Tribal reports. We have various Native tribal affiliations in New England yet our radio stations don’t bother to cover them more than very occasionally. In the Midwest I learn a great deal about what is going on around the country simply by listening to the Tribal reports.

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