When people hear I travel for work they make comments like “ooo fancy” or “that’s so cool” but they never think about these less glamorous things… I don’t think my family (who sees me traveling all the time) even think about these things.
- I hate the leaving part
I absolutely hate flying out alone. From the moment I start packing I start to get anxious and sad. I think about everything that I’ll miss while I’m away; and the worst part I think about how everything in my life just keeps on going without me. I miss birthday celebrations, out of town guests, family dinners, and evenings out.
Oh, and while I’m at it let me just add that I cry during every departure – even though I’ve been doing this for two years.
- Jet lag is a real b*tch
I fly from MT to ET a lot, which makes me feel like I own that time change, at least on the way there. It’s only 2 hours but the first day I’m home I might as well be violently ill. I’ll go to bed at 7 PM and wake up at 9 AM the next morning. If I have to work the following day I am literally half as productive as on a regular day. Sometimes while I’m gone I get so tired I cry uncontrollably – which as you can imagine is very embarrassing.
Recently I just did a 9 hour time change, which was a lot harder than I thought it would be. I took naps the whole time I was gone and I hardly was able to keep up.
- Airplanes give me diarrhea
I swear this is true. After every flight I get the runs. I think it has to do with the cabin pressure. It doesn’t matter if the flight is an hour or 7 hours. It’s a very unfortunate side effect!
- Airplanes also give me zits
Except first class! I blame this one on the recycled air and all the people breathing on you in close quarters. First class doesn’t get zits, because first class is more spread out AND you get those hot towels. I use these to wipe my “problem areas” and get all the filth off my hands. They should be called it zit free class.
- I hate eating alone
This one prevents me from trying out all the great local cuisine. If there isn’t a take out option I don’t eat it. I always think of that scene from Friends where Rachel is caught eating alone. I would feel awkward, where do I look? Can I watch people at another table eat? Is that rude? So I just don’t do it.
- I still don’t have status
After 2 years! And I have never redeemed points! How often do you need to fly to get status? Now that said I do fly on two different rewards programs, but I travel 1-2 times a month (on average) each between 2 and 5 days each. I don’t want to travel more than that. I would actually prefer to travel less – starting immediately.
- I hate not sharing my experiences
My attitude would definitely change if I had someone to share each experience with. Instead I have to do 95% of my travel solo. It is very rare that someone from work ever accompanies me, and even rarer that someone from my personal life does. It doesn’t even have to be someone I particularly like, just a familiar face. Things I have experienced solo that would have been better if someone was with me:
- Boston Seafood
- Atlantic Ocean + Joy’s Feet
- Persian Gulf + Joy’s Feet
- Pittsburgh Pirates fireworks
- Getting lost in Pittsburgh
- Sunrise wake up call off the Persian Gulf
- Business class treatment
- Pittsburgh Sandwich
- New Mexican Burger
I know there are perks (like I get credit card and loyalty points and just getting to travel for free) but I often miss things at home. I am never caught up on my to do list, I never get enough DIY, I never get to bake everything I want. Ok, I may or may not be a social hermit.
I do get to see a lot and have a lot of experiences that I would never get without a job like this, but its really exhausting. I recently just got back from Qatar (check out some pics here). I’m sorry to those of who you have the travel bug and hate me for getting to travel and not wanting to.