Thursday, March 8, 2012

Not A Time For Fun Time…

Do you think that those who travel for business are lucky people? Please, never confuse traveling for business with traveling for pleasure. Yes, sure, those who travel for business can take a break from being stuck behind the desk in the office for a day or two, or take a break from the house chores, but it does not mean they are having fun.

“Whatever,” my friends say, “You are not getting sympathy from us. You get to see the world this way.”

So what do I see, and how do I feel when I travel for business?

Well, lets see. It was only few days ago that I was off to Seattle… for business.

As usual, when I go out of town, especially if it is a nice place, I feel guilty. Guilty, because my husband, who loves to travel and certainly deserves a break, stays home with Alex. Then, of course, Alex starts his usual:
“Mommy, why do you have to go?”
“Oh, baby, I have to go to work.”
“But I love you, mommy…”

So I leave home with a broken heart and the image of sad adorable face of my kid.

But once I close the door and leave the house, the marathon begins. Guilt makes me schedule trips with no room for entertainment, or long TSA lines, or airplane delays, for that matter. I get my cardio workout by running to the gate, which is usually at the last corner of the terminal. I jump into the plane and take a breath. As the flight attendants announce the safety rules, I settle in my place and look around – as usual, in the front of the airplane there are people in suits, and towards the back of the airplane there are people in jeans, some are with babies in their arms. This scene always makes me wonder - which one of these people would I want to be?

Seattle’s usual gloomy but handsome downtown welcomes me with people rushing on the streets with Starbucks cups in their hands, minding their own business. It feels as if I am a bystander watching others run around, living their lives, having their routines. Every place I had traveled to is so different! So, I guess, traveling for business is not so bad, after all. But I do feel sad that I don’t have anyone next to me to share this feeling with…

So I get a cup of coffee from a Starbucks around the corner and join the stream of Seattlers on the streets of downtown. No one would think I am the outsider. I spot a little café on the corner of Seneca and 4th. I think this is the one I have been to before and loved its delicious and buttery panini sandwiches. Should I go in after work? I have to reward myself for working hard… and I will not count the calories…

Once work was done, I didn't have time to explore the city or visit the famous fisherman’s wharf. I had to catch my flight back to LA. This trip was just a glimpse into the city's day-to-day life. As I was making my last ran through the downtown, I stopped to breath-in the city's busy air to memorize this moment. I wish I could share it with my lovely family… so I pull out my cell phone and dial home – it’s the perfect time for… face time…

With love, always,
xo Zuma A

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