Travel Stinks. Now Quit Complaining.

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When I was a kid, I never traveled.

If I couldn’t get there on my bike, I didn’t go.

I didn’t have the chance to ride a train, fly, or even take a cab.

Vacations were what other people took.

As I have gotten older, I’ve had more opportunities to get out and see the world.

Or at least some other states.

What I have learned is travel absolutely stinks. The lines. The security. The delays. Airport food.

A Baby That Doesn’t Want to Fly.

A Baby That Doesn’t Want to Fly.

But mostly the bathrooms (but that is a whole different blog that I’m not prepared to write and you’re definitely not ready to read).

When you get right down to it, travel is a hassle.

No matter what you do, it’s just hard to get from one place to another. It’s almost unnatural.

Everyone is in a hurry. Everyone seems to be put out by the experience.

Frustration runs rampant.

Lots of people trying to get someplace on time, and invariably they are running late.

Of course, it is usually their own fault they are behind schedule but in today’s society people really struggle with taking personal responsibility.

So if I’m late, it must be the baggage handlers fault, or the airlines, or at least the person standing in line in front of me.

Or behind me.

Or 27 feet away from me. Especially if they have a crying baby (and let’s all take a moment to say a special silent prayer for those mom’s who travel with babies… and if you travel with 2 or more you should have your choice of flying free… or being named a Saint).

Of course, this is just an example. I hope that I’m not one of those impatient travelers.

I consider myself lucky because I had never flown before September 11, 2001. This makes me lucky because I don’t know any better.

I never had the opportunity to run straight to the gate 7 seconds before takeoff. I have never even walked through an airport before we were under a “Code Light Blue/Orange/Mauve/Purple/Slightly Gray”.

I didn’t even know that I was responsible for turning someone in to security that left their baggage unattended.

I had no idea you were supposed to sit in the airport and complain loudly because the airport mechanics found something wrong with your plane and the flight had to be delayed 45 minutes.

I assumed that we all wanted our planes to be in 100% perfect mechanical condition before we boarded and had them hurl us through the air at 400 miles an hour at 37,000 feet above the rest of the world.

So my idea of travel (especially by plane) is that it’s annoying, but necessary.

I am amazed by the whole experience.

How is it possible that I can be looking at the Declaration of Independence in Washington, D.C. at 4:30 p.m., then drive to the airport, get on a giant metal tube, fly through the air, and be in my own bed fast asleep by midnight?

It’s not right. It is unnatural. It’s truly amazing when you think about it.

And yes, it is somewhat of a hassle.

But get over it.

Because when you get right down to it… it’s pretty cool.

And from my own experience, it certainly beats riding a bike.

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6 Responses to “Travel Stinks. Now Quit Complaining.”


  1. Travel Stinks. Now Quit Complaining. | PrincipalsPage The Blog
    on Jul 4th, 2009
    @ 2:41 pm

    [...] more from the original source:  Travel Stinks. Now Quit Complaining. | PrincipalsPage The Blog Share and [...]


  2. Kelly Christopherson
    on Jul 4th, 2009
    @ 4:42 pm

    My experience is that too many people want to be somewhere else than where they are and don’t take time to live life where they are at the moment. They are looking forward, or backward, to what is to come or what has happened instead of realizing that both are as untouchable as jumping up and touching the clouds overhead. You might as well spend time trying to jump into the clouds because at least you are getting exercise. For me, the ability to travel has allowed me to see the world but, unlike so many of the young people today, I am able to see it with a bit of life experience against which to balance what it is I experience when I do travel. It isn’t an overwhelming experience – instead it is a chance to learn and expand my knowledge but also to sift through my experiences to using my life experiences to balance out what I encounter. Having traveled a bit, I know that there will things I will see and encounter that will force me to rethink a few things and there will be things that I will have to just disregard because, well, they really aren’t that significant in the bigger picture.
    I, too, marvel at being able to get up in the morning, get on a plane, fly from the freezing cold of Saskatchewan and land that afternoon in Orlando, Florida to green grass, warm temps and a totally different life than what I had left. Amazing!! And, truth be told, I love people watching in the airports. I’ve introduced my girls to the idea that, for the time we are in the airport, we can study humans in an artificial environment and see how they react to different situations. Simply amazing!!!
    Glad you enjoyed your trip. Hopefully, one of these days, we’ll cross paths during some conference or another! Happy summer vacation.

    Michael Smith Reply:

    Thanks for the comment. Your thoughts couldn’t be more true.

    By the way, just got my passport. I will be anxiously awaiting my first invite to Canada.


  3. Angie
    on Jul 8th, 2009
    @ 9:02 am

    I saw DOI on July 4 too! You should have stayed for the fireworks behind the Washington Monument – pretty amazing.


  4. My Life Has Officially Peaked. | PrincipalsPage The Blog
    on Oct 14th, 2009
    @ 7:29 pm

    [...] I have no business flying halfway across the country by myself (has anyone ever gotten lost in the Atlanta airport and starved to death??).  Since [...]


  5. It’s a Small World. With a Rather Long Line. | PrincipalsPage The Blog
    on Jan 17th, 2010
    @ 9:43 am

    [...] I just don’t get why it’s so much fun to stand in line for 90 minutes to ride a ride for 90 seconds. [...]

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