So here I am in NYC, doing my book publicity stuff. I had grand plans for posting on the blog last night and today, but my Internet connection is terrible. As in, nonexistent. And it was going to be be the first weekday in months that I haven’t posted.

I started feeling withdrawal. So I called my husband to ask him to search online for a computer I could use in between my 1pm meeting and my 3pm meeting, and here I am, in between meetings, posting from Kinko’s: For thirty cents a minute in case you are wondering.

But believe me, the Kinko’s cost is nothing compared to the babysitting costs on this trip.

I took my twenty-one-month-old son with me because last month I traveled without him, and it really felt wrong. Like he was too young for me to be away that long. And the time before that I took him with me but he cried the whole time because I left him with unfamiliar people during the day. So, this time I flew my babysitter from Madison to NYC for a five-day trip.

Expensive, yes, but I have a one-hour window today, and I can use the time for posting on the blog instead of feeling guilt about how I’m taking care of my kids. Feeling guilt takes time. I like to think that the insane cost of the babysitter frees up my mind to do more interesting things than feel guilt. But maybe that’s not totally true. Because look, I spent the time writing about it instead.

12 replies
  1. Maya
    Maya says:

    I think it’s great you could take him. I know I couldn’t be away from my daughter that long.

  2. DAR
    DAR says:

    FYI – if you find yourself in this position again, and are looking for Net connectivity in NY, there’s quite a number of cafes and such with free Wifi access around, where you can bring your laptop and start working.

    There’s a good list of them on this page, as well as links to other larger lists:

    http://www.nextny.org/wiki/show/Offices+and+Co-working

    Scroll down to the section titled “Satellite Office Space”.

    * * * * *

    This is such a useful link. Thanks. You’d think there would be wireless places all over the city. But in fact, it’s hard to find them. There’s no telling where they are. I went positiely nuts the last three days trying to find wireless spots in between meetings. I love this link.

    –Penelope

  3. buggy
    buggy says:

    “but I have one-hour window today, and I can use the time for posting on the blog instead of feeling guilt about how I'm taking care of my kids.”

    I’m lost. Why are not spending the one hour with your kid? How is writing about your life more vital than living it? If there’s a generational gap, it’s that I don’t understand how you young’ns can be so “meta”. It’s just a blog, not a living, breathing human.

  4. Michael Holley Smith
    Michael Holley Smith says:

    Good move, good thinking. Nothing is more important than keeping your children first in line in “who gets what.” They have antennae, they remember; everything else fades away. You are never wrong to place your child and your love for your child at the top of the heap of stuff you need to do every day.

  5. Jacqui
    Jacqui says:

    I’m baffled that it would be so hard to find an internet connection in the middle of NYC.

    * * * *  *

    I wasn’t going to respond to this, but I am stunned by how many people have emailed me to help me solve my NYC Internet problems. Here is the problem: I have meetings all day, so there is not really a point to lugging my computer with me.  This means the only time I can really work on my computer is at night. I am staying at a friend’s extra apartment in NYC. She does not have a wireless connection, and I cannot leave the apartment at night because my son is sleeping and I gave the babysitter nights off. Convuluted, I know.

    –Penelope

  6. Wendy
    Wendy says:

    Re: Buggy comment – given that she posted at 1:20 PM, her son was probably napping as that’s a very standard toddler afternoon nap time. (My son is also 21 months so I’m familiar with the 1-3 pm opportunity time slot).

    Penelope – there’s an advantage of having the career control you do (more parents should think about that). You can go on a business trip but schedule events far enough apart to spend time with your son (and bring a baby sitter for when you have business events).

    Working in other capacities and for corporations business trips tend toward solid 7 AM through to 7pm (or later) experiences such that there’s no point in bringing a toddler as you’d never see him.

  7. Stever
    Stever says:

    so what was the final cost of this post?

    * * * * * *

    Ha. Funny question. About $20 for Kinkos. And, if you count the babysitter, another $14.

    Go back and read the post again so I feel like I got my money’s worth!

    –Penleope

  8. Oliver A. Trunk
    Oliver A. Trunk says:

    Hello from good old Germany.
    I found you, when I was looking for other people with my name “Trunk”. I was so surprised when I found you. Excuse my poor English. It is very interesting to see what different peolpe, jobs, families have the same name, and so the same roots. It would be very nice to here from you, to learn more about the family ( the clan ). Best regards, Oliver A. Trunk
    http://www.malerei-trunk.de.vu

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