Back from Hong Kong

Note: This blog post also ran in the Society of Professional Journalism’s “Journalism and the World” blog. Click here to see the original post (and comments).

I was in Hong Kong this week for a conference, thus no postings — for some reason, I couldn’t reach the website from my hotel.

I do love to travel, but traveling is a lot more fun when you only have a little work to do. Just enough work to feel useful, on some interesting assignment that gets you in to see people that you wouldn’t ordinarily see as a tourist, and to places you wouldn’t ordinarily go.

But not so much work that you feel dead afterwards.

My work-related travel used to fall into the former category.

Lately, however, more and more of it has been of the “feeling dead afterwards” variety. Yesterday, for example, I spent the day at the Four Seasons hotel in downtown Hong Kong, attending sessions about global regulatory changes in the securities industry, and then had lunch with industry experts. In the afternoon, I had back-to-back interviews with senior executives from Hewlett-Packard.

Then I checked back in with my office, handled a few minor administrative matters and gave writers advise on stories they were writing.

In the evening, I flew back to Shanghai. I got back to my house around 10 p.m. at night — and then put in another full day’s work, deadling with administrative matters and editing a big story on the Chinese securities industry. Unfortunately, the story had to be pretty much rewritten from scratch, and I didn’t finally get to call it a day until 4 a.m.

Is it worth it? Yeah, I think it is. I enjoy the work very much, I do like the travel, and I’m slowly learning to delegate more.

Someday soon I expect that I’ll be in control of my schedule, and will be able to plan my days so that I get adequate and regular sleep, and sufficient downtime to spend with my kids or at the gym.

Tonight, I’ve got meetings, more editing to do… my business manager just came into my office and told me to go home and take a nap. Do I really look that bad? I guess I do.

Signing off in Shanghai,