If not now, when?

One American woman. Twenty acres and a 1650 farmhouse in Tuscany. Random introspection and hilarity, depending on the day.

07 August 2006

Come Fly With Me ..

"Let's fly, let's fly away... " (if you don't have that Sinatra song in your head by now, shame on you... or happy 13th birthday).

Random trivia; that song launched the glamour of travel to the mainstream US public. That was waaaaay back when it was still politically correct to say "stewardess" or "air hostess" and the general public didn't think that nylon workout pants, baggy logoed t-shirts and (GASP!) fanny packs constituted appropriate travel attire. Today MY seatmate, thankfully, is significantly more upscale: he obviously just came from an audition for a role as the newspaper boy in the broadway production of ANNIE, complete with saucy black beret, jazz shoes, red suspenders and a banjo (but I digress.)

And so, I'm typing this a dead-cat-morning's-breath away from red-suspendered banjoman (I'm trying to restrain my unbridled lust) as Delta flight 70 wings its way over Nice and Monte Carlo. It couldn't be a more gorgeous day to fly. An unfortunate 2-plus hour mechanical delay also means that we're heading through in the morning sunlight, soaring over dizzying blue oceans dotted chaotically with torn patches of wake, the aquatic playground of the world's rich, marginally famous, and infamously badly behaved.

From this height, the pull of the currents in broad swaths and the varying depths of the ocean reveal a rare glimpse at another world entirely. I have a tangible, anxiety-inducing fear of swimming in open water, though it beckons alluringly to me from this vantage point.

I slept fitfully, if at all, due in part to too many thoughts running through my head and with the runner-up cause fairly attributable to a crappy redesign of the earplugs provided in Delta's amenity kit (FWIW, Delta, earplugs are supposed to SQUISH TOGETHER, go in to your ear, then expand to block out sound. Please, please, please take this to heart before ordering gazillions more of these lousy injection-molded plastic bright red suppository-looking things).

Silver lining: Ipod with well stocked playlists.
Reflective pensiveness is the mood of the moment.

I'm not borrowing trouble from tomorrow, Beatrice, but I cannot help but wonder: how many more times will this be my private spectacular aerial tour? I am in the window seat by design, and I am not disappointed: The bellissima Ligurian coastline and her bevy of island girls are showing off today, as azure and clear as it has ever been; tufts of cottony white accenting the right places 'just so' ... self-absorbed starlets performing as if perhaps they know that I may not pass this particular way again in the near future.

There are moments in time that are meant to be held like fragile, breakable things. When you're handed one, stare out the window and breathe deeply. Today is the only guarantee each of us has; may we use it wisely.

The entire western coastline of Italy and southern France is collectively waving at me. Welcome home, indeed.


Anonymous Ublend said...

Did you forget to mention that you were in business class...so, no simpathy for you baby! Now, if you were in Cattle Coach with no "amenity bag", then you can talk.

BTW, you need to check out Sean's blog...big news.

6:29 AM  
Blogger Annika said...

Bentornata, bella!

8:07 AM  
Blogger ElleStarr said...

you don't like open water swimming? we can't be friends

9:11 PM  
Blogger Viaggiatore said...

Don't you worry your pretty little head, Elle: we'll still be friends! I am inexplicably drawn to water: lakes, oceans. It is one of the fatal flaws with my current housing situation. I'm a great swimmer and a hell of a snorkeler, especially if the water is gorgeous. And besides, I'm fun to watch doing the three drinks in rapid succession that it takes me to beat the totally unexplainable anxiety (rapid breathing, quickened pulse) back down to manageable levels.

It's kinda the mantra of my life: "Mind over matter, baby." And when that doesn't work, copious alcohol and pharmaceuticals.

9:25 PM  
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