Today I had the honor (and bad luck) to have to attend a meeting in McLean, Virginia with the contractor from the contract I manage. Of course, I did not want to go, who would? However, since I am the analyst for the Army portion of this contract, I sort of had to. I really did have no choice.
I was the designated driver for the ride to McLean, but was lucky in that my boss offered to drive us back. I should have gone with my gut and called in dead. On the way down to VA, I was driving in the fast lane (of course). I suddenly got this uncomfortable feeling. Something just didn’t feel right. So, I went with my gut and switched into the next lane over. As soon as I did that, the fast lane stopped. I don’t mean slowed to a stop, I mean came to a sudden, almost crashing halt. Actually, that is not exactly true. One of the cars in the fast lane locked his brakes and proceeded to have an accident. The car started sliding sideways, down the grassy embankment, and finally slid back up the other side and on to other side of the highway. He was lucky no one was in the northbound lanes. He was lucky he didn’t roll. We were lucky I had gone with my gut. And he was able to continue driving away.
Once we got to the meeting, I had the chance to tune out the entire briefing. Most of the briefings were far too technical for me. I am a budget guy; I have no knowledge of or interest in the technical aspects of what was briefed. Hell, if the enemy took me hostage and demanded that I give them information; I couldn’t even tell them who was at the meeting. And my boss’s briefing, which I did understand, did not make any friends. It was rough for both the government and the contractor. And of course, it did not make my life any easier.
At least I can say that we left the briefing early and got home at a reasonable time. I really should have gone with my gut and called in dead and stayed home.