Friday, May 14, 2010

Forgetting My Own Travel Rules

While on the road, I've recently pondered the travails of travel. As a veteran road warrior, I'm embarrassed to admit that these time-tested rules were forgotten. Call it a temporary lapse.

  1. If at all possible, bring your own pillow. George W. Bush was mocked for doing so during his first presidential campaign but if you've ever tried to sleep on what passes for pillows in some hotels, you'll know the value of bringing your own. I remembered this at two in the morning.

  2. Bring some NyQuil. A reduced dosage will produce a decent night's sleep. Although some road warriors favor the bouquet of certain cough syrups, I am a NyQuil snob, preferring the original vintage to the cherry-flavored varietals.

  3. Bring exercise garb. You don't need to go all out but some comfortable tennis or running shoes will at least permit you to get on a treadmill or even walk around an empty conference room. If you wear low-cut Converse tennis shoes they'll think you're a wandering film director.

  4. Have a good novel close at hand. The business reading is fine, but eventually some escape reading will be needed. You don't want to be subjected to the dreck that is offered in the gift shop.

  5. Keep the television off. I turned on the TV for a few minutes to catch up on the British elections and then squandered an additional five minutes trying to make sense of one of the dumbest movies ever made. I am ashamed of that five minutes.


Jay said...

I've been finding lately, especially at nicer hotels, that the quality of pillows far exceeds my own. I've even found myself pondering whether I can stuff them into my bag and make a quick getaway a few times :)

I'd add that the nebula of gadgets I travel with have imposed their own time-tested rules. One of my favorites was told to me by a friend at a conference. It's a take-off of the classic Glengarry Glenross Always Be Closing: Always Be Charging. Make sure you have the right charging cord for each device and make use of downtime near plugs to top them up. The use of mini and micro USB ports on most of them means you can consolidate down — I travel with a Griffin PowerBlock dual USB charger and a set of USB cords with different ends (30 pin iPhone, mini USB, micro USB).

Michael Wade said...


Thanks for a great idea. I'm going to add Always Be Charging to my travel list. It reminds me of a rule once set by an old politician: Never pass up an opportunity to use the restroom.