After years of working away most weeks, living in corporate hotels, and generally suffering the ills of such a lifestyle, I have landed on a project that positively encourages you to get out of your hotel and into a flat. No surprises that it saves a lot of money (a hotel room typically costing over £100 per night in most places).
When I was doing more traditional consulting (technology strategy type stuff), I tended to have several clients on the go at the same time, or being working for particular clients for only a few months. Every now and then I would do a longer term delivery role, but this was rarely more than six months. Since switching to being a full time project manager for complex systems integration type jobs and their ilk, I have been with particular clients for much longer.
On my last two projects, I found a few people had a long established preference for flat-dwelling signed up early for such arrangements when arriving on projects even where the projects provided little support for such ways of operating. It was always too much hassle for me and I enjoyed the convenience of a hotel. Did I really want another home to look after? Another set of bills? Washing up? Cooking?
I had a shock last year when my line manager, someone who had always rejected flat-dwelling and was clearly no kind of cook, said that he had been half-forced into doing it and discovered, to his surprise, that he liked it. He also said he had lost a lot of weight from cooking for himself rather than eating hotel or take-away food all of the time.
The final straw was when another close colleague joining the same project as, and also not historically a fan of flat-dwelling, went out and organised a flat during his first week. I went to the same agency the following day, looked at several possible options, chose one and … found myself in the fully furnished flat just four days later.
I am sat in my living room now, having just finished my first flat-home cooked meal ever, looking across a nicely lit marina, and filling this blog post in using internet tethering on my iphone (i.e. providing mobile broadband to my laptop using my iPhone instead of a mobile broadband dongle).