I’m off to Seoul, South Korea this time – for work again.
I’m teaching the class that we went to Chicago to learn back in September, and taught in Beijing and Sydney recently.
Stuart is supposed to be coming with me – but called last night explaining that he is quite ill, and has had to postpone his flight. At the earliest, he will fly tomorrow – which means he will be at the class on Tuesday. That’s not a problem, I can tackle the presentations and labs on day 1 on my own without problems, and rearrange the schedule to be able to do day 2 on my own as well if need be. I could probably get a third day done on my own, but after that I’m into territory and material I’m not terribly comfortable with – that’s why we have Stuart along.
So I hope he gets well enough to travel by Wednesday, otherwise I will be making it all up as I go !
We have one of the local Korean team helping with the class, so at least I will not be completely on my own – and SungJin was in Chicago with us, so we know he has good exposure to the material. It’s kind of important to have a local on the team when teaching in places like Korea, just to make sure that the messages get across correctly – especially in the labs.
Illness would have to be one of the things that scares us most in our team. Either not being able to meet our commitments to teach, or worse, getting really ill while already overseas. Especially with SARS scares these days, there are often body heat sensors in some airports checking people who have a fever. If you travel when ill these days, you’d better have a doctors certificate, or expect to be examined before you are allowed on a flight, and after you get off at the other end ! They could even quarantine you if they suspect you may actually have SARS, which really would mess up your travel plans.
The worst situation would be where we know people are flying in from interstate, or overseas to attend our class – if we cancel at the last minute they will have spent all that money and made a trip all for nothing.
So keeping healthy is a high priority for our team, which can be difficult when travelling so much, especially internationally. Being cooped up in a plane with extremely dry air can be a perfect place to catch bugs. Interestingly enough, several of my team mates have experienced the same thing I have – when we first started doing a lot of international travel we seemed to get sick after every trip – head cold or flu type symptoms. But now, we don’t seem to catch anything at all, we seem to have already caught everything there is to catch and have developed a level of immunity to the “travel bugs”.
Unfortunately this doesn’t seem to protect you from “kid bugs” – Stuart has three young school age (and pre-school age) kids, and kids tend to catch bugs from other kids and pass them onto their parents.
If you are reading this Stuart – go back to bed !! – and I hope you are feeling better soon.