Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Airplane blog

Several weeks ago I made a weekend trip to Texas. On 12/14, while in flight I suddenly had a need to write. These are some of my observations while in flight. I kept forgetting to post so here it is. Happy reading!


I'm ready. I've got my big hair and blue jeans and the captain has just come over the intercom announcing that our flight will arrive in just over an hour.

Texas! Don't Mess with It!

I'm flying solo for a much anticipated wedding and to visit my girlfriends. But the next time I go I won't be alone. This is my second visit since we moved and next time, if I don't take my kids to see their state of birth, they may sue me for independence.

Right now I am sitting in seat 11A. A window seat. There is a college aged girl sitting next to me who is studying from a text that must weigh as much as her and I combined. She looks young to me, probably in her early twenty's. I probably look incredibly old. Why do I say that? Because when I was twenty-two I thought thirty-four was older than dirt.

She is reading Homer's The Illiad. IN an attempt to make conversation I asked her if she was reading it for school. She said, no. I was actually very surprised. I had asked the question expecting an obvious response. Who, I ask you, reads The Illiad when it isn't expected of you? She told me that she had never read it and thought that perhaps it was one that she should read. This is when, practicing my best Texan drawl, I told her that there are these beautiful little inventions called Cliff Notes for such things.

She laughed in a charitable kind of way and hasn't spoken to me since.

I offered her some gum and she declined. She probably thinks that a middle aged woman with a Texas cheerleader drawl and big hair who reads Cliff Notes in lieu of real literature might not be the greatest conversationalist. Or she may just not like peppermint gum. But then again trying to balance that towering textbook might have her mind a bit occupied.

I, on the other hand, gave up reading on this flight because I kept reading the same paragraph over and over again. I wonder if my seat mate had noticed that I hadn't actually turned a page. I am currently reading a book called A Girls Best Friend by K. Billerbeck. It's an excellent read, but I am far too excited about seeing my best friends, and sitting so close to this gal is distracting.

Wait! She just got up to use the powder room and the text she is reading is sitting in the chair next to me. It is a very large Accounting Book....Huh. Maybe she will balance my checkbook for me while we are sitting here... But anyway, as I was saying, she is reading fine literature and learning to push numbers, and I am just trying to get through my latest chik lit book. It's a shame really. Here I have three full hours (four since my flight was delayed) of uninterrupted reading time but I just can't do it peacefully and contentedly sitting next to strangers.

Speaking of time, isn't time weird when you are traveling? It's like the minute you step into an airport "time" as we know it ceases to exist. Traveling long distances seems to make time feel weird...i don't know, maybe I'm just dehydrated and feeling "heady" from all the hair product I'm wearing.

When I started to write this there was a baby of about eighteen months sitting in 10E with her mom. The baby was crying for quite some time while her parents desperately tried to comfort her and make her quiet. I found myself caught between two feelings.

1. Compassion.
2. Annoyance.
On one hand, I want to reach over and tell her that I can't blame her sweet bundle of joy because I, a thirty-four year old woman, would also like to scream because I am tired of sitting in this cramped space near Smarty-Girl.
But on the other merciless hand, I want to give her that "I've-been-a-mother-for-more-years-than-you" speech that goes something like this: I know you are young. And your daughter is quite precious. But are you aware that there is a marvelous invention (and beautiful gift to Motherhood really) called Children's Benadryl? It's a miracle worker!
But it's not my style to give unsolicited advice to strangers. So I will do the same thing today that I do every time I am on a flight with a crying baby. I'll wink at the mom and tell her she did a good job, and that I have been there before. Only because that is what some kind lady said to me once a long time ago. And I have never forgotten it.
Well I should wrap up and try to read.
La Vida Dulce - from somewhere over Texas!