Sunday, November 9, 2008

Road woes...

Traveling for a living has its perks. I get to see the many nooks and crannies of the country and experience different parts of its history. I get to sample various cuisine from top notch chefs and tiny dives. I meet people of all shapes, sizes, and backgrounds and sometimes make new friends. In fact, there are few places that I travel to where I dont know anyone in the area. Plus, all of the airline miles I earn make it easy to see friends and family and to have fun when I want or need to. Its really a cool experience and Im fortunate to be able to not only keep in touch with people all over the country but hang out with them as well.

However, it isnt all farts and sunshine out here on the road. I often have a tough time sleeping. Not falling asleep, thats easy. Ive noticed that I cant sleep for more than 4 hours at a time. I think its because I always need to wake up to be somewhere. Believe it or not, Ive even woke up in my own bed at home and not known where I was for a second. Or there was the time where I got up at 7am, showered, and got dressed to head to work only to realize it was Saturday. Yeah.

Take this trip for instance. Ive been in 4 states in 3 days out on the west coast. Wednesday I hopped a 6 hour flight direct from Miami to Seattle, met a customer for lunch and a meeting, then drove 3.5 hours south to Portland, OR. Thats a total of 9.5 hours sitting on my ass which I never thought could be tiresome but it actually is. My legs ache from sitting for that long. The next day consisted of a meeting in Oregon City and then another down in Eugene, OR. Another 4.5 hours of ass sitting but at least I was driving this time so it helped the time go by a bit faster. (Quick positive sidenote: I also love driving in Oregon. The landscape is so effing green its unreal and the mountains are really cool. Saw a bunch of signs and stopped at Berry Empire for some fresh blue and raspberries but got denied because season just ended and all they had was frozen 5lb bags. It was hilarious walking on to this farm in a suit but Im not afraid to look like an ass and I loves me some berries. Ok, back to the negative...) The next morning its up and at em early to head to Boise, ID, just a mere 1.5 hours of sitting on my ass. I meet up with my sales rep, rent a car, drive to a meeting, and 2 hours later Im back at the airport. Its such a quick trip that we dont even need to fill the rental with gas because the meter shows full. We grab a bite at the airport and part ways. Its off to Las Vegas for me now, just 2 hours of sitting on my ass but the Vegas airport has closed a runway and they decide to delay my flight an hour AFTER we all board the plane. Since its Southwest and I dont wanna lose my seat (this is the lamest thing ever), I sit on my ass in the plane for an extra hour taking solace in the fact that at least I'll be in Vegas for the next 6 days and can unpack and unwind.

Im about to embark on a huge tangent here so be prepared because the only relevance this has to this blog entry is to show what happens when road woes take their toll.

Vegas airport is a effing madhouse because the closed runway has delayed all of the departures and people are everywhere - clogging the terminal trains, lying on the floor, etc. Great. At this point, Im irritated and the editors in my brain that normally prevent brash action have all gone on coffee break. I deplane and upon exiting the jetway am confronted by some asshole waiting to board the plane Im exiting for his flight. Usually this isnt a big deal but this dumbass has decided that standing in the middle of the doorway 5 feet away is a good idea. Its not. I am not dodging this guy because of other bodies lying on the ground waiting for the flight. He's moving or Im going thru him. I lay into him with my shoulder and let him know he is an asshole for standing there. To my surprise, another passenger leaving my flight agrees and adds his own 2 cents. Awesome. Nothing beats releasing frustration and having someone cheer you on. Next up, I notice the terminal train area is flooded with about 1000 people waiting for a train that fits 150 so I decide to walk. I have to take a leak anyways so I find a bathroom and take care of biz. As I leave the bathroom, there is about a 5 foot path between the wall and a bunch of slot machines. Some sloth of a kid is lying on the ground taking up 4 feet of this path. He makes a slight effort to move his foot before I roll over his legs with my roller bag, not his feet, his legs. "Whoops, sorry bud!", I announce with a devilish smile. God, that felt good.

Another hour of waiting for bags and I finally head out with an old college buddy for a few much needed bourbons. Im lucky to be staying with this guy because he has a means for me to let out some more frustration - a handgun and miles of desert. The next morning we head out for breakfast, buy some ammo, then drive to a junkyard out in the desert to shoot stuff. Ive never shot a handgun and dont like guns in general but this was fun. I was fairly accurate too, except when popping off multiple rounds in succession. Just a good release for a serious case of 3+ days of road woes. Now if only the gambling gods will smile upon me instead of crapping on me like they did last night. 4 more nights in Vegas before I finally head home for a much needed rest.

2 comments:

David said...

Great story. Are you bringing a camera on tour with you? Some shots of the desert, the berry farm, the insane airport would be great to see now, and great for you to review in the years ahead.

Blind Mind said...

yeah, i totally whiffed on bringing the camera. need to train myself to do that on each trip...