A couple of folks have asked about my work travels, so I thought I would begin sharing some details about these trips when I can.
First up is this week’s very quick trip to Seattle. Most of my trips are multi-night, so this trip stands out a bit as an outlier. In total, this was a 30 hour trip and boy did I make the most of it.
When I travel, I try very hard to limit the impact that my travels may have on my family. As such, I also make sure that they have several good meals at the ready and that any logistics that I can handle are done in advance (packing school bags, organizing and cleaning the house, and prepping things for easy school drop-offs and pick-ups). I devoted about an hour on Monday to getting all of these items squared away.
Tuesday morning was business as usual at the house and I spent as much time as possible with George. We went for our morning walk, I fed him breakfast, I changed him for school and sent him off on his way with John. After a few last-minute tasks on my end, I was off on my way to IAH for my flight to Seattle, Washington.
I was upgraded on my flight – a nice benefit for the 4.5 hour flight. Lunch was served and I enjoyed the Asian salad and tomato basil soup for my entree. I tried the lemon sorbet for dessert, but it was too tart for me. I also guzzled lots of water (both sparkling and still) in order to stay hydrated for the journey. The flight crew was exceptionally nice on this flight and they made the journey much more enjoyable. Side Note: almost everyone asks me if my life is like House of Cards when they find out what I do for a living. Ha! Ha! Ha! I worked on the flight and got quite a bit accomplished.
Once we landed at Sea-Tac I took the Link to downtown (the Westlake Center). The journey took 35 minutes and was $3.00. This is a steal compared to the $60.00 taxi or Uber alternatives. Besides, the Link is much faster.
After a quick check-in at the Sheraton Seattle, I made my way to the Washington Conference Center to pick up my registration credentials and to have 4 quick meetings. After a quick change, I had another meeting, then attended a cocktail reception. Then, I met a colleague and we hosted a contact of ours for dinner at Etta’s. Etta’s is near Pike Place Market and is a Tom Douglas restaurant. We all had delicious entrees (I had the crab cakes, fresh tomatoes and infamous coconut cream pie) and a wonderful dinner full of education policy talk. Nerd Alert! After dinner, I stopped by two more receptions before calling it an evening.
While I was traveling, I got lots of updates from John about George. I was happy to hear that they were doing well. I missed them so much!
I took advantage of my early rising tendencies and went out for a long run on Wednesday. I tackled the hills of Seattle and greatly enjoyed visiting the Space Needle and running along Puget Sound. The weather was 57 degrees and it was glorious. I can’t wait for fall running weather. After my run, I made a few stops in Pike Place Market and purchased a few treats for John and George.
After another quick shower and change, I had a few more meetings and a quick breakfast meeting. Then, I packed up my things and took the Link from Westlake to Sea-Tac. $3.00 and 35 minutes – you just can’t beat that! To boot, the train was almost completely empty for my entire journey and I had plenty of peace and quiet to go through work emails.
The airport was a zoo and I was so glad that I have Pre-Check. I spent a few minutes at the United Club before leaving to purchase a few in-flight essentials (bottle of water, a few magazines and a piece of fruit). I knew I was getting lunch on the plane, but I was always like to be prepared, just in case.
When I booked my flight, I used a status upgrade to upgrade myself to First Class. Since it was a 3.5 hour flight, I figured this was a good use of an upgrade! They served lunch on the flight and I chose the strawberry and chicken salad and tomato basil soup entree. While airplane food is notoriously bad, I typically really enjoy the food they serve on United. This meal, in particular, was tasty and fresh. I skipped the sorbet desert because I was not a fan of it on the outbound flight. I spent the majority of the flight catching up on bad TV and I worked for about an hour. I typically have a deal where I work on my outbound flight and relax on the return flight. It’s all about balance. We landed 25 minutes earlier than expected and I was home in plenty of time to help with George’s bath and sleep routine.
Easy trip, great meetings and no delays. I guarantee you — this trifecta rarely happens, but I’ll take it when it comes.