Thursday, May 8, 2008

Am I Too Cheap?

As far back as I can remember I have always been a little frugal. I compare the price per oz. when buying cereal, I drive across town to save $.03 on gas (unless I calculate that I will use more than that amount in gas to get to the station), and I always turn off a light when leaving a room (thanks Dad!)

In my job I have the opportunity to spend money that is not my own. And even though it isn't my own, I still am very careful about how I spend. I book cheaper flights, even if it costs me some time, I stay in cheaper hotels (as long as they are clean) and I eat the free breakfast instead of going out for something better.

BUT, on my last trip I realized I might be TOO cheap.

A typical travel day to Asia looks like this for me:

4:30 AM (MST) Depart house for Airport
Wyoming-Denver Flight
Denver- (SFO) San Francisco
SFO - HKG (Arrive 24 hours after leaving home)

Then somewhere on the trip I will make my way to Korea, then fly back from there, with the return trip looking roughly the same, but in reverse.

But, last trip I found out that if I booked a round-trip to Korea, then from Korea booked a roundtrip to Hong Kong it would save the company $300. So, here was what it looked like last time

4:30 AM (MST) Depart house for Airport
Wyoming-Denver Flight
Denver- (SFO) San Francisco
SFO - Seoul
Arrive Seoul, go through Customs, get luggage, check back in, go back through customs, 2 hour layover
Seoul - HKG (3 hour flight)
Arrive Hong Kong almost 30 hours after I left home.

Sitting in the Seoul airport I decided I was a fool. Nobody was mandating my trip cost X dollars, or that I would get any kind of bonus for saving the money. I wasted over 6 hours of my personal time, let alone my discomfort, for what? An extra stamp in my passport and saving the company some cash. (I even used my United Gold Card to get free meals in the Business class lounge)

I'll tell you, that's the last time I do that, unless the savings is $350, then i'll consider it...

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Music to Travel By

There are a couple of things that a person who travels as much as I do cannot live without. A durable wheeled suitcase, a massive carry-on, clothes that don't wrinkle, Airborne, and of course an MP3 Player. My MP3 Player of choice is the 8 GB iPod Nano. I know there are bigger units out there, and I know that the Zune and the Zen offer other features, but the fact is the iPod is just so damn easy to use (and I got it for a gift)

Over the course of time I have found that my musical taste runs to the slightly eclectic. I really can't settle on a genre that nails down my tastes. I thought it would be fun to share my Top 25 Most Played List from my iPod as of 8:05 AM today:

1: Iesh De Lu (Chinese) by Xie Jin Yan
2: Byker Hill by The Cottars
3: Donald Where's Your Troosers by Enter the Haggis
4: Happy Little Boozer by Korpiklani
5: Back to Black by Amy Winehouse
6: The Next Episode by Snoop Dogg w/ Dr Dre
7: Snake With the Eyes of Garnet by Shane MacGowan and the Popes
8: Gin and Juice by Snoop Dogg
9: Rasputin by Boiled in Lead
10: Donegal Express by Shane MacGowan and the Popes
11: Low by Flo Rida Feat T-Pain
12: Wooden Pints by Korpiklani
13: On The Radio by Regina Spektor
14: The Dirty Glass by Dropkick Murphys
15: Big Bad John by Jimmy Dean
16: Cocaine and Whiskey by Johnny Cash
17: I Write Sins Not Tragedies by Panic! At The Disco
18: Yeah by Usher
19: Rapture by Laura Veirs
20: Wolftrap and Fireflies by Carbon Leaf
21: Guilty Conscience by Eminem
22: Folsom Prison Blues by Johnny Cash
23: Cobrastyle by Teddybears
24: Corrido de Pancho Villa (Spanish) by Victor Jara
25: 10,000 Fists by Disturbed

Each song has it's own "time" when I listen to it, and they each have as many Skips as they do Plays. Feel free to share (here or on your own blog) what you are listening to.