Inc. Magazine, Mar 2010
The Secrets of a Road Warrior
How entrepreneur Jeremy Shepherd of PearlParadise.com keeps his sanity on long flights
A couple of times a year, I fly from Los Angeles to Hong Kong for a day of meetings with clients and suppliers of my online jewelry store, PearlParadise.com. Instead of staying overnight, I go right back to the airport and head home.
My first rule of thumb: no alcohol. If you get loaded up on Scotch on a flight like this, your trip is in the toilet. The first leg, from L.A. to Taiwan, takes about 12 hours. I spend the first half reading books on my Kindle, which has become as important to me as my laptop, since it's a lot lighter than books. When I start to drowse, I recline all the way back and get inside my PoshAir sleeping bag, which is like a Snuggie, but with seat-belt loops and an inside pocket for cash. I switch off the light and put in my earbuds -- Shure SE110s, which cancel out plane noise -- then let the Kindle read to me as I doze off. After a quick layover in Taiwan, I nap during the two-hour flight to Hong Kong.
Work in Hong Kong never starts before 10 a.m., so I may wait around drinking tea before taking five or six meetings and heading right back to the airport. Ideally, I'd be productive on the flight home, but I'm usually so zapped, I just zonk out.