Business trips are one of those guilty luxuries for working mom’s. Guilty because you are leaving your family and putting extra burden on your partner. Luxury because when you are done with your meetings, you return to the hotel room where there is complete silence. You can use the magical bedside phone to order food and then….wait for it…the food just comes and you didn’t have to do anything. When you are done eating, you set the tray outside your room and it becomes someone else’s dishes to wash. Ahh, beautiful.
To experience the best of both worlds, family and travel, I had an idea to combine the two. Friday afternoon, my husband and three-year old son flew to NYC to meet me after all the meetings wrapped for the day. We had a great weekend planned.
We decided to take a bus tour around the city to reduce the walking for our son.
We chose the bus that was a 2.5 hour non-stop tour of Manhattan and Brooklyn because it was the shortest duration. We didn’t consider that our newly potty trained son may not have the ability to “hold it” for two hours.
Sure enough, 30 minutes into the bus ride, my son looked at me and said…”I have to pee pee.” Wordlessly, my husband quickly downed the bottle of water he was holding and I got my purse into a strategic coverage position. I won’t explain in detail what came next, but suffice to say, we boarded with water and exited with “apple juice”.
On Saturday, we strolled thru Manhattan and hit some of the famous sites. When we approached times square, we were met by dozens of people in costumes. My son yipped with glee when we came across Elmo.
While I was rifling thru my purse, looking for change, I started to observe Elmo more closely. “Elmo” had long, dirty finger nails and generally did not look like someone I would want a run-in with.
Reality struck! Ahhh, we aren’t in Disney World, we are in NYC and I have potentially just handed my son over to a crack head!!! Stay calm. The mission now is to extract the child quickly without freaking him out or drawing suspicion that I had just clued into how bad a mom-move this was. I put a big smile on, tipped the Elmo and swooped my son back into my arms.
So, was it the right move to mix family and work travel? Absolutely! We made great memories and I found out later that my son had bragged to daycare friends that he was a New Yorker!