A life in waiting

2 10 2011

I sound very old when I say this. An awful lot older than every one of my 36 years, but the world really is a smaller place now. When I was growing up during the early 80’s, in the dock land waste of Liverpool, the world seemed so huge and out of reach. The area that I find myself in now literally a million miles away. Your narrator is sat in Hartsfield Jackson Airport, in Atlanta Georgia. It’s now 19:45, and I’ve been traveling since 07:45 (UK Time). I still have another flight to catch, so even more of my life will be wasted…waiting.

British people are renowned for a number of things. I heard someone say “Give a Brit a queue and a cup of tea, and they’ll be happy” ! Waiting, and waiting in queues appears to be one thing that I do a great deal of. Can’t say that it makes me happy though…it’s just a not so welcome by-product of this mobile jet-set lifestyle we find ourselves in. You queue to get on the flight, queue to go through security, wait to board, queue to board, wait in flight, wait to disembark, wait to collect baggage…you get the message. Next flight..rinse & repeat.

Waiting allows you to think about things. A chance to ponder upon life’s nuances, and to determine your course of action for the next round of corporate BS.

One notion whilst waiting in many (too many) airports around the world, is the soulessness of them. They really are the most busy and souless places on the earth. I am sat surrounded by people, of all creeds and colours…and yet feel utterly alone. I’ve felt this numerous times, just never really bothered writing about it. Am I alone in feeling this ? Perhaps the airport that is the most busy and yet devoid of human interaction is Dubai (DXB). At any hour of the day and night, it is rammed with people. Yet…cold and lonely.

The world has shrunk. We are now able to travel vast distances in a (relatively) short amount of time. One hundred years ago, the thought of crossing the Atlantic in less than a week would be deemed lunacy.

Next time you find yourself alone in an airport, look around. I guarantee that there will be many others, sat quietly, with a Hindu cow expression…waiting and feeling alone. Strike up a conversation..it passes the time !

Just waiting to pass through

PS – The one airport that breaks the mold to me is Singapore Changi. What other airport installs a jungle in the middle, repleat with running stream and fish. Not to mention excellent food. Once again the Asian’s win !

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