It’s funny-when I’m here, I think I miss it there. Once I get there, I realize how much I hate it and how much Reno is actually starting to grow on me.
The trip did not start on a good note. My co-worker who I traveled with (and who made all the plans) sent me a link to the hotel we were staying at. I’m not that familiar with the LAX or downtown Los Angeles area, so I printed a ton of maps-from the airport to the hotel, from the hotel to our first appointment, etc…
When we arrived at our hotel, we were told we didn’t have reservations at that Sheraton; our reservations were for the other Sheraton, 10 miles away. Which instantly made all the maps I printed worthless. Irritation #1.
Irritation #2 was the fact that there was not a restaurant, café, or coffee shop within a 10 mile radius. All of our meals were eaten at the hotel. The food was terrible and so incredibly overpriced-60.00 for breakfast for 3? I blew through my per diem money before lunch the last day.
Irritation #3-the meetings were very poorly planned. Our last meeting was in Buena Park at 2pm on Friday-our flight left at 6:40. There is no way in hell we would have made it back to LAX in enough time to catch our flight. So what does our broker do? Reschedule? Make things more convenient for us since we are the ones who pay him, and have traveled all this way to drum up more business? Nope. He drops us off at the airport 7 HOURS before our flight was scheduled to leave. When I realized we were taking the freeway back to LAX, all I could think was “You have got to be f’in kidding me” We rescheduled our flight home at a cost of $41.00 per person - I would have drank at least that much money sitting in a bar for 7 hours, so I figured it was worth it.
Our new flight left in 1 hour and 45 minutes-we made that flight with 10 minutes to spare. LAX has 2 security lines-one to check your ID and boarding pass, then the next one to check your carry on luggage, etc.. I have never seen such a long line-it was at least a ¼ mile long. SO very nerve wracking. I hate flying, I hate hotels, I hate being away from my family, and I will never again take a trip where I do not plan my own meetings/flights.
The 2 meetings we did go to on Friday were with companies we had already decided were worthless to us-we can’t meet their price points. Even after being told by 2 different people to cancel the meetings, we went anyway. (not my choice, obviously)
I do realize I’m kind of a bitch, but it irritates me when things aren’t well planned out. If I’m going to be away from my family, my trip better run like a well oiled machine. Too many poorly planned trips and I just wont go.
Oh yes-the final straw. Upon check out, my co-worker realized they had charged his Amex card instead of the company card he made the reservations with. The clerk asked “Did you fax in this credit card authorization form?” From the look on co-workers face, I was fully expecting a “No”, but he said “Yes, about 2 weeks ago.”
Clerk-“Well, when we receive the forms, we attach them to the reservation on the day the guest is to arrive, and we have nothing here.” You do the math.
So co-worker had to pay for the rooms on his personal credit card. After the fact I realized I should have offered to pay for my own room, but #1-they were 180.00 a night, and I wasn’t sure if I had that much on my card, and #2-that would not have happened if I had made the plans, because I am on top of things and he is not. Therefore, he learned a very important lesson.
Have I mentioned how glad I am to be home?
P.S. I forgot to mention how, after each meeting, I had to explain what just happened to my co-worker.
"So, he's going to be selling our blah blah to blah blah?"
"No, he doesn't do business with blah blah. He is the one who is going to blah blah blah."
It makes me feel mean to even say it, but how do you not understand business meetings at your age/position? He's been doing this longer than I have. Though it did boost my confidence, and since it's all about me.....