Eleven Months on the Job: Travel

I can’t believe it is coming up on a full year already. Where does the time go? Seriously. I went back and skimmed the previous “Months on the Job” posts and it was neat to see, at a glance, what was going at different points in time. Each post sparked a fond memory sort of like flipping through a photo album containing snapshots from my last ten vacations.

I like my job and the people I work with a lot but I wouldn’t consider the last 11 months a vacation by any stretch. While there has been a great deal of work and responsibility, there is one aspect of my new role many might consider “vacation-like”: Business trips and work-related travel.

I have mentioned many of the various conferences and events I have attended since changing jobs in separate posts but there isn’t a single post that captures the quantity and variety of places I have been able to visit for work.

Here they are in order:

  1. Las Vegas, NV (MIX06)
  2. Orlando, FL (DevConnections + Orlando .NET User Group)
  3. San Bernardino, CA (Inland Empire .NET User Group)
  4. Nice, France (DevConnections)
  5. Boston, MA (Tech-Ed)
  6. Auckland, New Zealand (Tech-Ed)
  7. Sydney, Australia (Tech-Ed)
  8. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (Tech-Ed)
  9. Las Vegas, NV (Adobe MAX)
  10. Barcelona, Spain (Tech-Ed)

In terms of time zones, the farthest destination flying west is Auckland (+13 GMT) which is 21 hours ahead of Seattle (-8 GMT). The farthest flying east would be Paris & Barcelona which are both +1 GMT, or 9 hours ahead of Seattle.

A better measure of the distance traveled is the actual number of flight miles at just over 67,000! Yes, I got to know SFO and ORD very well this year. Both of them did me wrong during trip 9 and trip 10, however.

Lessons learned:

  • Carry-on or leave behind;
  • Avoid ORD like the plague…there is no such thing as good flying weather in Chicago;
  • Fly direct to Vegas from Seattle (i.e., Alaska Airlines not United);
  • Don’t schedule your first presentation on the same day you arrive¬†in Auckland from Seattle.

So, while spending the better part of this past year learning all I could about the world of marketing & product management at Microsoft, I was also able to visit a big slice of our world and learn a wee bit more about its people.

Both worlds have been fascinating: All I had hoped in so many ways; more than I expected in so many more.