So, I used to travel for work … I flew somewhere just about every other week … a different city, airport, hotel … I was “Silver” on USAir, had a card for a few different hotel groups and was Avis Preferred so I could just hop off that rental car bus and into my compact SUV and hit the streets … no dealing with those pesky “other less-travel-savvy humans.” I know, impressive. I had a “spot” in the parking deck at my airport and had the security rigamarole down. Boom.
Cut to now, seven+ years later and I travel a fraction of that amount for work (or at all.) And frankly, that “now” is the cat’s meow. I don’t need to add the unpredictability of the travel world to my often-too-long work week. I’ll work all damn night as long as I can make my son’s lunch and talk about which eagle has the biggest wingspan and what the educational path is to becoming a Ninja with my boys for five minutes in the morning on the way to school (in person and not over Facetime).
It might be important for you to know that my motto (or one of them because I have a few) in life is to “never be a tourist.” I like to know (or at least look like I know) what I’m doing. Perhaps that’s why I’m not a great actual tourist. My dad always told me that he travelled with a “sport coat” on because he felt like he was treated better … by airport people, security, vendors, flight attendants, etc. I of course, haven’t figured out the “Sport Coat” equivalent for women (and don’t tell me it’s heels because that isn’t fair and my other motto is that I “hate fake people” so I’m not going to be “fake” and wear heels that clearly aren’t at all “me.”)To cut to the chase, the thing that sucks is that even though I used to travel all the freaking time, now I feel like people think I’m REALLY a tourist or, even worse, a BEGINNER. UNACCEPTABLE I SAY!
Last night, by some weird stroke of luck or computer glitch, my flight back (on business of course) to North Carolina was spent in the first class cabin. As I mentioned in my previous post, I was TIRED … like eyes hurt to be open tired. So when we pushed back from the gate, I was out … dozed off before we left the ground. (I’m not gonna lie, it’s because I took my “very professional” pony tail down so I could really nestle into those plush seats on the (please flight attendant don’t ever say this out loud again) “really old plane.” Insert slightly nervous laugh here.
I’m pretty sure my seat mate was about 12 … no, possibly 20 … looked like he may be on his way back from accepting a Nobel Prize in mechanical physics or something. He was dressed to the nines in a nice suit and looking professional and worthy of that plush super old seat. I of course was in three shirts (I had to put on the last shirt I’d packed as extra when I woke up in the lobby of that hotel because I was freezing and who brings a jacket when they go to New England in October, a pair of wooly lined leggings, a black skirt and gray slip-ons that are so old there isn’t any liner on the inside/sole of the shoe. I’d like to think the other folks were thinking, man that Vice President looks young, hip and cool, but judging by the reaction from the flight attendant when I woke up, they probably thought I was just a lame thirty-something who’s coming back from a gal-pal-visit to her old college haunt. “You’re not as young as you used to be, lady.”
“Good morning,” the flight attendant chuckled, “you took quite a little nap.”
Yeah, yeah lady. Just get me my VERY PROFESSIONAL ginger ale and bring that snack basket back toot sweet so I can grab another packet of Milano Cookies.
Add to that, as I was laughing on the inside at the fact they use real glasses for drinks in First Class (hey germ-a-phobes, it’s like a hotel room – give me the pre-packaged plastic cup please), my “very adult” and “worthy” glass stuck to the napkin and I spilled ginger ale all over my lap. Then I got the pitty napkin stack from the wonderful flight attendant and a judging eye glance from my pal next door.
Ugh, I can only hope that they enjoyed my snoring and maybe my head was tilted just far enough back that my mouth was open all ugly style … and the fact that if you were to crouch down to grab your bag from under the seat pocket in front of you, you might just smell my feet. You’re all welcome!