Sunday, July 12, 2015
Random Musings: The world through an outsider's eyes
I'm travelling a lot for work at the moment. It sounds far more glamorous than it is. Generally its long days of work, before an evening of more work as I try to get through the email that doesn't stop coming even when I'm not in the office to deal with it.
A room with a king bed is great because it means I have space to lay out materials as I pack up satchels or participant packs and the key things I first look for are the ironing board to get my work clothes presentable and if they have decent tea in the mini bar.
But between the hubbub of long days of busy work, one of the things I love is the moments I spend by myself in cafes. I try to find a window seat where I can watch the world go by.
Trams full of early morning commuters. People walking dogs. Mothers with prams on a mid- morning outing. Uniformed teenagers getting an after school coffee (when did that start, I don't think we ever did that in my time). Busses filled with tired workers heading home. The strange pauses and spaces that need to be filled in during a day of work travel lets me see people at all stages of their day and view them with an outsider's eyes.
Travel for work is very different from being on a holiday. It isn't just that your purpose and attitude is different - work not play - holidays for me revolve much more about who I'm with. The solitude of work travel provides an opportunity to sit back and observe. Work travel also usually places me in the business district or office parks, not your typical holiday destination. Instead it is home of the natives going about their everyday business.
As with anyone who travels a lot for work, the glamour rubbed off a long time ago. However I do love the opportunities it gives for professional growth, the inspirational people I meet, the conversations I have. And of course the opportunity for a little extra people watching.