My bicycle trip to San Francisco, and through Sonoma and Napa Valleys helped validate the economy is improving and Americans are optimistic.
Small town stores, the Backroads touring company, fellow tour guests, vineyards, estates, wineries, and restaurants all agreed that their businesses have experienced a positive upturn.
Fellow cycling guests were from all parts of the country, and included a venture capitalist, a CEO of a Healthcare company, advertising sales people, a petroleum engineer, a CPA, an ER Doctor and administrator, a bond trader, an environmental engineer (who advises heavy industry on air cleanliness), and a bicycle sales person.
Their common positive outlook is favorable because they are NOT from the high tech sectors, but from the service and manufacturing segments that need technology to fuel their growth.. All the establishments seemed to be busy and the registers were ringing.
We also met with a few San Francisco based clients. The three rounds of drafts at 5 PM at a downtown San Francisco pub were a lot more fun than the typical phone discussions and emails to the West Coast! Who knew people from the content management sector and fraud prevention businesses could be so humorous?
This trip also gave me just a slight glimpse of the time commitment of travel often experienced by Xtra Effort candidates and clients. It will be great to be returning home to the family and Xtra Effort.