As most of you know, my family welcomed a new baby girl six months ago which, by my calendar means that it's time for me to end my self-imposed ban on conference attendance and to rejoin the law prof population.
In the last couple of weeks, I have ventured out and taken my first two short trips away from the family for various conferences. The conferences were great (H/T to the organizers of SEALS and IPSC), but I'm obviously out of practice dealing with flight schedules, airlines, security, ticketing requirements etc. So here's what I've learned/relearned in the last couple of weeks - and maybe I should blame "mommy brain" for a lot of my travails...
1/ Don't leave expensive electronic items in airplane seat pockets. Even if you know exactly where and when you left them, and you report the loss promptly, you may not get your items back.
2/ If you take your wallet out of your handbag to put your parking ticket into said handbag, make sure you put the wallet back in your handbag and don't accidentally lock it in the car as you blithely jaunt off to the gate lounge. (The male equivalent is probably, put the wallet back in your pocket, but then again the male equivalent won't have a case of "mommy brain".)
3/ Leave a big tip for the airport cafe server who takes your word for it that you are a bona fide traveler and have accidentally left the cash (that you needed to pay for your dinner) in the car and will be back in a minute...
4/ Wear good running shoes in case you leave all of your valuables in your car and have to sprint back to the parking lot, narrowly missing your flight.
5/ If carrying a breast-pump, be prepared for thorough searching of your person and your bags every time you go through the security line even if you just went through the same line with the same screeners 30 minutes earlier with all the same stuff in your bags.
6/ If you change your outbound flight, don't count on the airline having not accidentally cancelled your return flight without letting you know because they had no record of you getting on the outbound flight that you originally booked. [Or, a simpler rule, NEVER change your outbound flight.]
Did travelling get more difficult since I last travelled or is mommy-brain to blame for all my angst?