Confessions of a Business Traveler

The job of the travel writer is to go far and wide, to make voluminous notes, to tell the truth.


Much to the relief of my mom, boyfriend and daughter – this won’t be as sordid as the title leads you to believe. But likely to the boredom of my four or five other readers, it won’t be as exciting either. But let’s get to the ugly truth. I started my job as a traveling task force sales manager with the thoughts that I would be a explorer, finding new places to eat, relax, have fun and write about. And that is what I did. I laughed at the thought of ordering pizza to my room and staying in. I’m a social person, I need to be out there, see and be seen.

And I am that way for the first or second week in a new city – so excited to find local places to shop and eat. But I sit here, my fourth week in Grandville, near Grand Rapids MI – having dinner to go from Chipotle in my room for the second time this week. Last night, I wondered into an Outback Steakhouse for an appetizer after not being able to decide where to go. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with Grandville MI, Chipotle or Outback. It’s not you, Chipotle, it’s me. (Bill, that is for you.) What do I do back in my hotel room? I try to do more online training to get better at my job, but mostly I watch reruns of Castle. I won’t lie, the chemistry between a writer and a homicide cop is hot. It could happen.

I’ve talked about going to some more breweries, wineries and going line dancing (even packed my boots) but haven’t. Am I in a rut? maybe. Would it be nice to have a traveling partner to go places with? yes. do I still love my job? yes. but there are drawbacks – you have to be okay being somewhat of a loner, being secure dining alone evenings and thinking your family, friends, romantic interest might be thinking there are people just as fun as you are and those people stay home. (yes, I have a fragile ego. lol)

I also get sleepy driving once I have made the same trip more than once, and some of my efforts to stay awake may give the impression to other drivers that I am a bit “touched in the head”. If you see someone – chugging McDonald’s coffee, eating Hot Tamales (the candy), singing and car – dancing badly while driving – honk and wave. That’s me. What do I sing? Oh – anything. Missing my daughter? Probably Nikki Minaj or Beyoncé. Missing my boyfriend? Probably Rascal Flatts, Blake Shelton or Luke Bryan. Missing my funkier side? Prince or Missy Elliott. Missing my sanity? George Strait, always King George. Can’t decide? I will likely try to find an 80’s station and hope for a lot of one hit wonders in between some always good Phil Collins, The Police and Michael Jackson. Perhaps having a traveling partner is a bad idea. For them. I sing loud and bad. Really bad.

Another weird change- I have always kept my hotel room clean, and allow housekeeping in to freshen room each day. This week? I kept the do not disturb sign up, my bed is unmade, there is a towel on the bathroom floor. There is also dishes in the sink (my room has a kitchen) and I still haven’t thrown my dinner mess in the trash. If I were home, this would be unacceptable – but giving myself a little slack.

This is all temporary – except for the bad singing. I will have a new assignment soon, a new city, a new hotel – and I will become an explorer once again.


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