I don’t think there is anyone out there who enjoys travelling for business…unless of course you are Ryan Bingham (of motion picture “Up in the Air” fame), who feels completely at home in airports, hotels and lounges.
Not my cup of tea.
Fortunately, I don’t have to travel very often for business and when I do, its usually one or two day trips in a car..touring around the province…mostly in smaller towns where Tim Horton’s is my best friend because I can always usually the washrooms and not feel obligated to buy coffee or Tim-Bits (just wish they would use paper towel instead of air dryers…but thats another story).
Because the person I work with was “footing the bill” for our most recent excursion, he decided it would be best to economize….not a problem! So, he booked a room in a hotel in Eastern Ontario and we shared it for the one night we were away.
One room…two beds.
We drove for hours…hitting every little town we could find…in our search for business opportunities (I am in commercial real estate). When we finally arrived at our hotel, my weary bones were looking forward to a good nights sleep…it had been a very long day.
We checked in…did the swimming pool/hottub thing…grabbed a bite at a nearby restaurant…had far too many beers and then dragged ourselves back to the room.
The hotel we stayed at was very nice. Tastefully appointed, clean, well maintained…actually, a place I would go back to with my family since it had all the bells and whistles including an outdoor pool and great exercise facility and spa.
Sharing a hotel room with a business associate is usually awkward. A relationship that is completely professional suddenly becomes extremely personal when they strip down to their undies and you see them not as a business colleague but as a human being – warts and all!! Its actually a great common denominator.
We both performed our night-time rituals…brushing teeth, taking our respective medications and getting into our “pj’s”…and climbed into our respective beds.
I always think about that great John Hughes movie, “Planes, Trains and Automobiles”, when Steve Martin and John Candy are not only forced to share a room but also a bed. Don’t you remember the classic scene?
“Del, where is your other hand?”
“Between two pillows.”
“Those aren’t pillows!!!”
I crashed before my colleague did and fell into what I thought was going to be a deep sleep.
Until 2:37am…at which point he started to snore….but not just a snore. It was an eruption of sound that reverberated through the room and into my head.
It was violent, loud and completely brought me back from my peaceful “zz’s” to a hotel room that suddenly became very small…I had no place to go.
I made coughing/clearing-of-throat and movement sounds in the hopes that I would stir him and get him to stop snoring….didn’t work.
I called out to him to stop….nothing….I even threw a towel at him…..nada!! I put a pillow over my head to dull the sound…nothing seemed to work.
Finally, on his own about two hours later, he rolled over and stopped snoring. I was able to fallback to sleep.
4:42am….it started again.
Needless to say, I woke up exhausted. He didn’t.
I am 45 years old and love my sleep. I need it and require it. Lesson learned.
Next time, I scrape together the $150 and get my own room.
Do you have war-stories from the road that you would like to share? Would love to read all about them…no names need to be mentioned….I highly doubt your boss would read this blog anyhow!!