Published: February 4th 2009February 4th 2009
Some people don't like flying - call me a glutton for punishment - but I actually enjoy it. Despite the highly intensified "hurry up and wait" atmosphere, I find it offers a respite from our daily lives. Looking around the roles of the people surrounding me become clear - almost like a play where everyone must wear their proper costume.
You see the business travelers dressed in suits with black brief cases, an "I'm too important" fast walk and a PDA either on their ear or visible via harness. In stark contrast, you see the families, stroller in tow, looking anxious about the flight and weather junior will scream the entire time.
There are young travelers usually in pairs toting backpacks larger than they are. They tend to look either excited and slightly trepidations, or completely haggard yet triumphant (depending on weather they are coming or going.)
Then there are the unidentifiable singles - like myself. Some reading books, some sleeping, some typing on laptops, ear buds in place. They are not dressed up yet not dressed down, but unidentifiably right in-between.
I actually wonder how people might categorize me. This leads me to another thing I love about traveling: (notice I went from like to love?) The gift of time. For me it is time to think and read and write. Time to analyze what is important in life and, often, to give some people a call. Because at the end of the day when the business traveler, or backpacker, or family evaluates what is truly important - it’s not the suit or house in the Hamptons, or passport stamp - it is the relationships that you have nurtured - a living legacy that is created by loving the people around you.
I know I may not always be the best at keeping in touch, but I find comfort in knowing that the people I love - know it. And my friendships are deep and strong and cherished. So while I traverse the Pacific I will let the happy thoughts of family and friends keep me company.