Work. After all, my employer did foot the bill for my trip.
After work on Monday, I joined some of the office folks for drinks and dinner, both at a couple of very fine places, including the Langham Boston Hotel which used to be the Federal Reserve Bank, built in 1922 . Very posh.
Over five hours, the longest conversation that didn’t have to do with work was a four minute discourse about cats. It was as if these folks didn’t realize it was Monday and that we’d be right back at the office the next day.
And my airplane karma seems to have come to an end. My boss and sponsor of my Boston trip (being a jewel-encrusted-frequent-first-class-flier herself) had given me a free upgrade coupon before we left Seattle. Since I had already checked in for the outbound flight, when she gave it to me, I called the airline and requested the upgrade for the return trip. No sweat, they told me, there’s availability and you’re in. Just bring that coupon with you. But this morning while I was packing, I called to double check and they said no, the first class section on this flight has been booked since the beginning of time, and my name wasn’t on the guest list. I had held out a little hope that the woman on the phone had made a mistake or that the middle-aged man in the grey suit would be caught in traffic and miss the flight. But alas, I’m writing this among the hoi polloi in coach. I guess that’s really why I got the first class upgrade on Saturday—they just never bothered to collect the coupon.