Scenes at an airport

Overhead, a woman on her cell phone. Her flight was on time. Could the person on the phone still pick her up? Yes? Who all was coming, then? Were they coming in to the airport or parking? What time was dinner going to be?

And to all of this, I thought, if I planned my life down to that detail, I would certainly go crazy. If the flight’s on time and someone’s picking me up, I figure they’ll be there, I’ll hook up with somehow, and I will likely eat at some point. Possibly at either a standard meal time or when I feel hungry. Of course, most likely of all is that I’ll rent a car or grab a cab. Airport pickup. Reflections of my life.

When walking by the airport bar: a woman drinking a beer at the bar alone. Large fabric antlers on her head.

When leaving the Alaska Boardroom, an instinctive turn right. Like that turning point when learning a foreign language when you start thinking the words rather than translating them. Alaska flies to Orange County from gate C20. And C is to the right. No looking at boarding passes or terminal signs needed. I was dropping off a friend a few nights ago. “Does it seem weird to be here and yet not getting on a plane, since you come here so often?” No, it just feels familiar. The airport is one of those places I know. Like my neighborhood or my house. I can walk around with the lights off.

Yet this turbulence I never get used to.

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