18) I’ll Fly Away…

June 13, 2010

Remember that great Nora Jones c.d. of the same name as today’s post heading? I spun one particular track off that album over and over again, whilst tending to the tender wounds of my ego bruised  heart a few years back and I have to say, I think it helped to fade the black and blues. Just thought I’d toss that in even though it has absolutely nothing to do with what I’m going to write about.

The actual  heart of the matter is how much I love to travel. I know, these days, it can seem like a drag preparing for a flight, having to adhere to the multitude of security regulation. I just chalk it up to the cost of traveling. Sure, I wish I’d (just once, please…) be bumped to first class and I can’t say I particularly enjoy being crammed beside a chatty stranger. But, there are many things I absolutely adore about heading toward a new frontier.

Winging it from Toronto to Winnipeg

List 18 – These are a few of my favourite flight related things:

  • I love that I can get to the airport for the cost of subway fare instead of spending $50 plus on a cab. I usually have one small wheely case and my nap sack with me so, unless circumstances beyond my control prevent me, I often opt to take the TTC to the PIA.
  • I enjoy the pre-boarding process. I’m not in love with the whole security shake-down but I can’t say it bothers me all that much either. Not even the time when I was leaving from Winnipeg to L.A. and it seemed as if I was the only person getting the pat down. I like to arrive t the airport a bit early so that the possible snaking line to drop off my bag doesn’t unnerve me. I then pass through to the other side and possibly (hopefully) peruse some art in Pearson International Airport’s Terminal 1 (Penelope Umbrico’s left over show from the Contact Festival adorned the walls this time). Or, I stop into the magazine store and flip through a few mags, then take a slow conveyor belt ride over the book shop to jot down a name or two of a novel I need to put on hold at the library. (I can’t help it. I’m a  library addict.) Then I try to find a seat, far from the maddening crowd, to do some positive visualizations of an empty seat (or row) beside me on the plane. For a comfy chat-free flight to my destination.
  • A seat with a view. This time, while partaking in the fingernail gnawing process of deliberating between accepting the seat automatically selected for me to another one of my choice, I settle on a seat with a right side view. This is always a crap shoot although I don’t know why since I’ve made this particular flight from Toronto to Winnipeg more times that I can count. Unfortunately I wound up in an in-betweener (more wall than window beside me)… behind a wing. D’oh. In order to look out the window I had to crane my back forward then twist my neck around to see the awesome landscape poking through the clouds behind the silver wing.

    More wall than window. Bigger windows please.

  • Taking off. I really enjoy that moment when the plane slowly courses across the tarmac, comes to a stop and then hauls ass into the wild blue yonder. It always feels like a punctuated moment, transitioning from the same-ole-same-old into something new. Even if that feeling only lasts long enough for the do not unfasten your seat belt sign to blink off, I always feel, however fleeting, like I’m pressing toward something new.
  • I a-frickin-dore pressing my forehead against the window and checking out the jaw dropping landscape below me. I fly at least once a year and never seem to tire of the geometric patterns of an aerial view. The prairies are awesome. The canyons are breathtaking. The multitude of lakes and rivers running through this wonderful world of ours make me ache with the desire to take it all in. Window gazing to spy the Eiffel Tower, Chrysler building or whatever else I can behold on my travels, through that way too small portal, is much more preferrable to me  that watching a film – although depending on the time or length of flight I’m the first to admit the in-flight personal entertainment center is a bonus! Just don’t ask me to shut my window on the Grand Canyon passing below me for you to watch a film you can rent once you get back home.
  • I like being able to absorb myself in a distraction free activity whether it’s working on my screenplay, say, or reading a can’t-put-down memoir or novel – my latest read being the gorgeous and talented Bill Parson’s latest draft of his novel in progress, P Minor Blue. Visit his link at Mocaisland and click on Bill’s writing for a taste.)
  • Landing. At the end of my journey I can’t help but think of the enthusiastic cheers heard at the end of a flight to Jamaica. I can’t say it’s the only place I’ve travelled to when a touch elicits cheers of thanks and a vivid recognition of what an awesome event has just transpired. We just flew through the air people. It’s difficult not to take how mighty an event flying actually is for granted. But, I’ve found on most flights I’ve been on in North American it seems as if air travel is just an ordinary think. Or, maybe there are a few people tucking their enthusiasm inside like I am. Still, I have to admit I love the outward displays of gratitude I’ve witness on flights to Paris and the West Indies over the years. Hopefully I’ll discover more of them in the coming years.
  • One of the best parts of flying, though, is getting to where I’m going. And, a few days ago, on this recent trip, it was my mom waiting for me in the arrival gate. Now, it’s time to go through my arms around her before I get back on that big metal bird.
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One Response to “18) I’ll Fly Away…”

  1. B P said

    Did someone say, “gorgeous”?

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