Friday, March 4, 2016

Flying into fear



     Paris. London. Rome. Jerusalem. 

     Sure, I'm an international traveler. Flitting about the globe like a luna moth—I'm off to Tokyo on Saturday—wearing a bespoke suit, crisply folding my International Herald Tribune in airports from Copenhagen to Hong Kong to Vilnius, stifling a yawn as I notice that my flight takes off in 20 minutes and I had better finish my espresso and amble over to the departure gate, wherever it may be ... 
     No, that's a lie. I'm a stressed out traveler, dressed in my sensible walking shoes,  one hand clutching the lump of my wallet through my clothes, the other my boarding pass, printed out at home 23 hours and 59 minutes before the flight's scheduled departure, using an elbow to nervously guiding my rollie bag, expecting Homeland Security to wrestle me to the floor at any moment, on general principles. 
    But I can aspire, can't I? Why should Donald Trump be the only one with carte blanche to shout down reality and substitute a more flattering image? If a crude, mendacious, gold-plated, blustering P.T. Barnum of a fraud like Trump can insist he's serious presidential timber, then I can pretend I'm Daniel Craig, picking a piece of lint off my lapel and nipping a martini as the hanger in Qatar explodes behind me. 
    I saunter into the airport with the ease of a duke, taking the morning air at his estate...
  
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13 comments:

  1. I get it entirely. Everything you cherish is right here in front of you in your leafy paradise. Lucky man indeed.

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  2. I can relate to your travel anxiety. I have it too. I know mine is the fear of airports. I'm afraid of getting lost or detained, so I won't make it to the gate on time and miss my flight. Like you, I try to remedy this by getting to the airport 2 hours early. Once I'm sitting in front of the gate I'm OK, and then I enjoy shopping and having a snack at the airport. When I get to my destination and it's nice, then the trip was worthwhile. I also don't like to leave home for too long. Even when I'm with my husband (and son) we never stay on vacation longer than 4 days.I know you'll enjoy your trip.

    LindaB

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  3. As my Cymric forebears would put it, "siwrne e ddal." Or better yet, "siwrne e saffi. Don't ask me to pronounce either.

    Tom Evans

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    1. Is that Welsh for "Nobody will know what the hell I'm talking about but I'm gonna say it anyway"? Please enlighten us...

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    2. Something like "caught a journey"and "safe journey."

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    3. One is "good journey" and the other "safe journey." Giving Neil a little verbal sendoff was, I thought, a mere courtesy. Sorry if doing it in Welsh annoyed people.

      TE

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  4. I'm the same way. It took my husband a while to covince me to leave my home and dog for a Viking Cruise in France. Once there, I had a fabulous trip. Now he's starting the process again of trying to get me to choose a new place to visit. While I'm fortunate to have the ability to travel occassionally, I still don't want to think about leaving home. Although now the problem is figuring what state to move to with retirement looming and Illinois taxes soon impossible to pay.

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    Replies
    1. Just look at it as if you'd put the money aside that you saved all these years by paying too little in taxes to Illinois government bodies.

      john

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    2. Check out UNTOURS. They arrange apartment and car rentals or, in cities transit passes, all over Europe.

      TE

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  5. Maybe take a raincoat -- looks like a good chance of rain in Tokyo next week.

    SandyK

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  6. Relax. Count to 10. slowly.

    100 year ago this was not possible.

    Look around in the crosswalk and don't drink the water.

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