Last week I flew coast to coast, from Oakland to New York, with a brief stop in Dallas and back home again. Yes, lots of flights in a few day period.

What amazed me is the amount of time I spent just hanging around at airports. I chalked up about 12 hours of my life last week in wait mode. That’s a long time – like almost a full waking day.

Sure, I do it to myself a little bit – anyone who’s ever missed a flight probably errs on the side of caution by showing up a little earlier. And I’m not one to add stress to my life by cutting it close in the first place. But, seriously, I think the reliability of flights has gone way down. I’m now shocked if a flight actually takes off on time, and I don’t mean the leave-the-gate-but-sit-on-the-tarmac type of airline “on time.”

So we wait.

And we…

look at strange sculptures like this castle at the new international terminal in DFW.
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get some shut-eye, like this business traveler in Newark (top right)561168875_bb5a485998.jpg.

grab a beer, like Jason and me at Newark.
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people watch, except in the wee morning hours at Oakland. Nobody’s home…
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(click on the pic and check out the “Laptop Lane” – yes, you can rent a private laptop station in the airport to conduct business… while you wait of course)

try and locate missing bags (that never come), like at Newark baggage claim.
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arrange transpo to NYC at 3am, like with our guy Smiley, my new favorite New Jersey limo.
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All the while breaking out the work laptop, firing up the iTunes, thumbing on the blackberry and checking voicemail. One thing’s for certain: work doesn’t wait.

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