So far I’ve seen the inside of my hotel room and the inside of my client’s office. I did manage to take a walk yesterday to the ATM, saw scenery I thought would be cool to take, and ripped my pants in the process of trying to take a picture. I have like 2 casual (chilling pants with me for the month) uhhh! The office driver has offered to take them to the local tailor to get them fixed and for that I’m grateful. I’m also grateful I got a tetanus shot before I came and my skin didn’t get pierced when I climbed over the iron gate.
Whenever I travel for work I’m usually either going to a project office where there are local staff and foreign staff working or I’m traveling with 3 or 4 other consultants for a specific assignment. I’m generally never the only consultant on an assignment where we don’t have a project office which is the situation I’m in now. For me that has meant a lot of nights ordering room service which I’m not used to at all. When I’m traveling I usually have dinner with my teammates at least several times a week and if we’re new to a particular country we make plans to go sightseeing together on the weekend.
This trip is a bit different as I’m alone really and although the client is here they haven’t offered to meet up for dinner and/or offered to take me sightseeing. That’s fine because they live here and have their own lives going on and honestly they hired me to do a job, they don’t need to play Julie cruise director and I hate feeling like I’m imposing or forcing myself on people. So now I’m on a mission to make some friends because at this pace, I’m going to finish up all the casual reading material I brought with me way before my departure date.
So I’m on a mission to make friends, which I’m finding is pretty hard and awkward for me. I’m not one of those people who just randomly strike up a conversation with strangers. I often wonder how people come off a plane with a new best friend. I sit down, dig out my reading materials and put on the headphones.
So now I just have to work on getting out of my comfort zone because this traveling alone stuff is so not what I’m used to.