A couple of months ago, I wrote a post documenting an average Monday, hour-by-hour, minute-by-minute. The next week, I wrote a post about “being on the road”, now that I’m traveling more for work. Yesterday, I flew to Green Bay and back – with a connection in between – all in one day. So I thought it would be fun to take both of those post ideas and combine them into a new post – documenting a Tuesday spent traveling. So take a deep breath, and follow along as I take you through another “day in the life of Sarah”!
4:30 AM: Phone alarm goes off. It’s a good thing I decided to set a backup alarm, because I accidentally set my regular clock for 4:30 PM – eeek!
5:35: Leave house and head to airport
5:44: Arrive at airport parking. Pick up valet driver, drive to departures.
5:50: Arrive at departures. Tip valet driver, head to gate.
5:55: Long-ish line for security, which in Columbus means more than two people.
6:05: Make it through security. Yes, this means that the time between leaving my house and getting through security is exactly 30 minutes. I heart CMH.
6:10: Pick up my standard airport breakfast at Starbucks: Grande nonfat latte with one pump of pumpkin spice (a nice SBX worker told me this was the cheapest way to order it, not a nonfat pumpkin spice latte with just one pump of the pumpkin) and oatmeal.
6:15: Arrive at gate (the last one in the terminal, of course). Say hello to my colleague, David, who is accompanying me on this trip. I’ve been traveling by myself a lot lately, so it’s nice to have some company. Slice the banana I brought from home (always tricky to carry-on without getting smushed) over my oatmeal and inhale before boarding the flight.
6:45: Flight #1 to Detroit. Man next to me says “good morning”, and my initial reaction is to think, “WTF, is this guy really going to try to talk to me?!” Realize that he was just being friendly and has no intentions of continuing conversation. Have I really become that cynical that I get annoyed when someone greets me?! Fall into early morning stupor.
7:45: Arrive in Detroit, a few minutes ahead of schedule. This means we can walk, not run, to our connecting gate.
8:30: Flight #2 to Green Bay. Fall into second early morning stupor.
9:00: Arrive in Green Bay, now on central time. My Distributor, Scott, is waiting for us inside the airport – I can’t remember the last time someone met me inside the airport instead of just pulling up with their car. Maybe it’s never happened? I’m thinking the fact that Scott’s car is sitting in arrivals – right along the curb – has something to do with it. #smallairports
9:15: Holy sh*t, it’s cold here – as in 30 degrees colder than Columbus! On the way to his office, Scott drives us by Lambeau Field, home of the Green Bay Packers. I’ve seen it before (this is my third trip to Green Bay in six months), but David never has. It’s a nice stadium, but it’s not the ‘Shoe!
9:30: Arrive at Scott’s office. Spend the next ~2 hours getting prepared for our meeting that afternoon with Scott’s main customer. David prepares the scale for our demonstration and I talk strategy with Scott and Scott’s manager. David then does a run-through of the demonstration, which goes well. We’re all set.
11:15: Stop by one of the customer’s stores for a quick walk-through. I’ve been before, but David hasn’t and it’s always a good idea to visit a store before you meet with the customer. Gotta check out all the pretty scales and nicely wrapped meat packages – isn’t my job exciting?
11:45: Scott takes us to a local Green Bay sports bar for lunch. They have a lunch buffet, so I opt for that. I forget to take a picture of the cup of stuffed pepper soup I had, but it is good and it hits the spot – I am freezing. The rest of the lunch buffet consists of a pretty pathetic salad bar and pizza. The pizza is actually quite good – and hey, at least it wasn’t Applebee’s! The photo is fuzzy – bad Sarah – but you get the idea. I also snap a photo of David’s “Lombardi Burger” – a burger topped with hot artichoke dip. When in Rome, right?
1:00: Arrive at customer’s corporate office early to set-up for the meeting. I’ve been here once before, and once again I marvel at the understated elegance of the office. I help myself to the free coffee bar and eat the Biscoff cookies I got on one of my flights that morning – definitely one of the best parts of flying Delta.
1:30: Meeting begins. Despite the difficult nature of the discussion and the fact that I am the only female in a room full of married men, the meeting goes well. Not “we’ll cancel the order we placed with your competitor” well, but about as good as can be expected.
3:00: Since our flight isn’t for another couple of hours, Scott (left) suggests we grab a beer and discuss the meeting. Beer at 3 PM on a Tuesday? Count me in!
4:15: Arrive back at airport. Walk right through security, no lines. Since the flight is a bit delayed, I decide to be productive with my time and start writing this post.
4:50: The Delta gate agents do something unheard of – they apologize for the 30 minute delay and give us FREE SNACKS at the gate?! Once again, #smallairports. I’m not hungry, but take a bag of animal crackers and some pretzels, both of which I stash in my bag to put in my desk drawer when I get back to the office. David and I share a bag of shortbread cookies – what did I just say about not being hungry?
5:30: Board flight #3 to Minneapolis – yep, going backwards this time. The gate agent “upgraded” me to a “economy plus” seat – you only get what you ask for! Am pleasantly surprised to find that “economy plus” really is nicer than economy – check out all that extra leg room! I also have an empty seat next to me. Score.
6:45: Arrive in Minneapolis, slightly delayed. This time, we do have to huff it to board our flight on time, especially since we want to grab some dinner to take on the plane. Opt for a mango chicken salad from some taco place next to the gate.
7:05: Board flight #4 to Columbus. After reaching 10,000 feet, discover that my fork has gone missing. Nice man next to me is also enjoying dinner from the same taco place, and offers me his used fork. He tells me he’s from Ohio, as if that makes sharing a fork with a stranger OK. I politely decline and wait for the flight attendant to walk by (which takes about 20 minutes). Happily, Delta is still generous enough to give me a set of plastic utensils with my $600+ flight. Eat “salad” (turns out it’s more like nachos) and read from my kindle.
8:20: Take out computer to continue writing this post. Realize after the fact that I didn’t get a snack when the flight attendant came by – I guess the utensils were my limit? This time, when the nice man next to me offers me his Biscoff cookies because he already ate a brownie, I take him up on his offer. Maybe being friendly to the people next to you isn’t such a bad thing after all?!
10:05: Finally arrive back in Columbus (now on Eastern time again).
10:20: Board shuttle to parking lot, where car is waiting for me in valet pickup area. In case you’re wondering, I always valet at the Parking Spot – both for work and personal travel. We get a discount through work, so it’s still cheaper than the closer airport lots and I feel much safer when I travel early in the morning / late at night, as I did today. Plus, I get out of there faster – totally worth it.
10:42: Greet Susan as I walk into my apartment. Feels strange that I was just here this morning – this was all the same day?!
10:43: Read postcard that my brother sent me. Almost cry – he’s so sweet. Clean litter, set up coffee pot, get ready for bed.
11:00: Read in bed.
All in all, a good day. Four flights, one day, no issues = win.
Anyone else travel frequently for work? What are your airport survival tips?