Upwards to Finland

For all you nervous to fly alone, namely Don whom I met at the Sprint store today: no worries. You read and follow a few directives to get to the airport terminal. It can take a while, but no sweat. It is not any worse than lining up before recess, or doing fire drills repeatedly because the sensor system at your work is broken – but think recess, not fire. Waiting in the terminal seats you get assaulted by CNN (they would play NPR if they had any bit of mercy) and the extremely disorienting sensation that you have no idea why anyone else is travelling. It is not like a road, where you can guess based on your knowledge of the streets, direction, time of day, nearby places, whether people are going to work or the YMCA. But in an airport, you can hardly tell if it is business or pleasure, and those categories are intentionally broad enough to avoid narrative. The powers-that-be will keep you updated if your plane will enter at a different terminal, in which case you just follow the instructions given and the other would-be passengers of your flight to the new terminal. Once there, you wait in line, they scan your ticket, and you enter a small uncomfortable room with a bunch of strangers. But now you are strangers with a common purpose, and that is some relief. You wait in this room, and just follow the instructions of the oracles. The magic roars, the plane rises, and the mysterious augurs in the cabin summon favorable winds. Do as you wish. No effort of yours is required for the argosy to take you to a distant land, so why not do it? Get to Seattle or Tampa or Quebec City.

Tomorrow morning I take off for Turku. May the winds be favorable, the passengers thin, and sleep deep.

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