Leaning back in the lounge chair writing, I found myself unconsciously humming along to the song playing somewhere in the atrium below. It may have been coming from one of the restaurants surrounding the fake walls of the reconstructed fort of St. Augustine below the balcony where I worked. The music in the huge air-conditioned space enclosing the back of the hotel was partially drowned by the sound of the several waterfalls, but I was pretty sure it was coming from near the sailboat.
Being location independent for me means that I have structured my work to make my geographical location essentially irrelevant. I can write from anywhere. Most of the planet has internet access for email and online chores. Cell service is relatively cheap for the few times I need to talk to clients. My “office” resides in a backpack and has everything I need.
When my partner was sent on a 3-day business trip for some training at a nice hotel across the state, this freedom to work from anywhere showed one of its better qualities. It allowed me to join her on this pseudo-vacation.
With a regular job, I would not likely have been able to take the time off to join her through the middle of the week. I still had work that needed doing, but at least I could have my choice of two pools to enjoy on my breaks.
Her company was footing the bill for mileage, her meals and the cheapest room in the very nice hotel where the training took place. I had to pay for my own meals (like I always do), but otherwise work for me went uninterrupted.
The hotel had internet access to allow me to deal with emails, a nice balcony in our sixth floor room and other nice areas to relax while I wrote. Everything I normally have when I work was still with me, I was just in a nicer location for a few days.
They even upgraded our room for free simply because we asked. We travel as often as we can and have learned it doesn’t hurt to ask. They either say yes or no, so it’s either the same or better than not asking.
More work got done in those 3 days while I enjoyed the restfulness of the surroundings. The evenings allowed us time to enjoy the nightlife at the resort, and catch up with friends in the area.
It works best for me to change up the scenery every few days or so, even if that means simply working in another room. Staring at the same wall each day is not good for me, so sometimes the situation takes me to even nicer places than I usually frequent, and the ability to flow smoothly with these change of plans is priceless when we can work anywhere.