Thoughts On Two Weeks Of Travel

For most of the last two weeks I’ve been traveling. The first week and a half were vacation followed by a brief stay at home and then business travel. Today was my first day in the office for two weeks. It’s been a rough day thanks to jet lag. Hopefully one more good night of sleep will have me back on track.

The vacation part of the time away was in Massachusetts and Maine. In Massachusetts, I was able to spend two days doing genealogy related things and in Maine we visited with Lauri’s relatives. The business travel portion was a “new employee orientation.” Seems kind of odd to bo to an event with that name given I’ve been in my current job for three years. However, 11 months ago, the company I worked for was acquired and they’ve slowly been working us through orientation. My turn finally came this month.

The ipad featured prominently in all of this travel. We used it for traffic updates to supplement the Garmin GPS and it did a great job helping us navigate around the problems identified by Google Maps. It also gave the passengers something with which to pass the time when conversation and watching the landscape no longer sufficed. I used it to plan out my genealogy research and keep our itinerary.

Lauri’s niece and nephews loved the ipad and were sorry to see it go. As we were saying our goodbyes, Emmett looked into the car through the side window and called out, “Goodbye iPad!” They played lots of games and I was able to show lots of photos.

On the cross country flights to and from San Francisco, I was able to listen to music, read, and play games to pass the time. On the 6 hour westbound flight, I ended the flight with 54% battery remaining making the ipad a great way to pass the time.

Of course, one needs to keep one’s mind occupied on a six hour flight where the airline has the seats packed so tightly that people are literally rubbing shoulders. Air travel has become an incredibly painful form of transportation. First there is the security gauntlet where a lot of disruptive but not particularly effective security has us balancing shoes, removing belts and juggling all this with our carry on bags. Then we get loaded onto an airplane where the seats are sized for children. I had an aisle seat and my shoulders extended beyond the width of the seat and I’m not really a large human. As a result, I kept rubbing elbows and shoulders with the woman next to me (who was roughly my size) and getting bumped by the aisle traffic. Somehow we’ve turned air travel into a grueling experience rather than something fun. By contrast, the road trip up north took longer but was significantly more comfortable and entertaining.

I enjoyed the trips but it’s good to be back home!

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