While I will never complain about ANY international travel, traveling for business bears little resemblance to leisure travel.  Your entire day is largely consumed by work and socializing with co-workers; even if you don’t socialize with co-workers in the evenings, everything is closed.  When I traveled to Kansas City, the only time I saw anything was the third trip when I attended an evening Kaizen event.  I was with two co-workers from Portland who have been my work friends since!  We toured the Harley Davidson power train factory and a museum for items from a sunken boat (unearthed obviously), the Arabia Steamboat Museum.  We also ate KC BBQ every day for lunch, which was surprisingly fun!  On my trip to Golden, Colorado, I intentionally flew out later on Friday so I could do at least one touristy thing, which turned out to be a tour of the Coors Factory (even though I don’t like or really drink beer, it was interesting).

This is all to say that, if you have to travel for business, ensure you add a weekend on at one end (or both ends) if you actually want to do any site-seeing.  When I traveled to Civray previously for work, I saw a little of Paris when I arrived two days early, but that was all.  I am really looking forward to my extended time in the Bordeaux region!  I plan to spend some time exploring the Southern Coast and the chateaus in the area.

I’ve currently seen nothing of Belgium really though and will be leaving rather early Saturday since everything in rural France closes early and very little is open on Sunday (so far, it appears to be one store and one restaurant that both close at noon).  Given that, I may take the train back to Belgium for a weekend since I’ve never been here before and I feel like I will be leaving without experiencing anything Belgium has to offer.  Ok, well not NOTHING – I’ve mastered the art of roundabouts and learned the expressway speed despite the lack of an actual sign.  I also survived a massive Carrefour store: