Posting has been pretty light around here lately, and for that I apologize. I’m going through one of those dry periods that hits every now and then. You know the kind – you sit down to write, thinking you have a great idea, and then it just ... poofs.
So, to shake things up a bit and get the old synapses firing again, I’m heading to
No, really. I’m leaving Saturday morning at oh-dark-thirty and winging all the way to the other side of the U.S. of A. for a week.
OK, I’ll admit I’m not going just because I’m fighting writer’s block. If it was just that, I’d go to
There’s just this one, itty-bitty thing. I don’t like to fly.
I mean I really, really don’t like to fly. I’m the one who begged her doc for just enough Valium to keep her doped during the flight back to the States from
Those were the nicest, most stress-free 19-hour flights I’ve ever taken. We're at 40,000 feet and bouncing like we're on a dirt road? Hey, no problem.
But this time, I’m stuck. No health insurance. No nice doc. No Valium. I’m just gonna hafta suck it up and be brave.
I’ve been afraid to fly since I was a little tiny kid. Sure, I’ve done it anyway, and I’ll do it this time. But just thinking about walking down that echoey plastic causeway into the belly of that tin can with wings and thick little windows makes my stomach flipflop. I think it’s a combination of a fear of heights and enclosed spaces, all rolled into one nasty, white-knuckled, just-close-your eyes-and-try-to-breathe phobia.
A friend said, “But that’s what the airport bars are for!”
Well, yeah. But drinking at isn’t my thing. Besides, I’d probably just throw up.
It’s not the flying itself that gets to me. Once the airliner has leveled out at altitude, I can sorta let go of the armrests, look out the window at the clouds down below and pretend I’m in heaven instead of riffing on the fact that I’m sealed into a tube hurtling through the air at some ungodly speed several miles above the earth.
It’s the taking off and landing that curls my toenails and sends a trickle of cold sweat down my spine. Since this is a cross-country trip and we have to stop in
Erk. Same thing coming home.
Yeah, people fly all the time. Some people fly the way they used to take trains. It’s like commuting for them.
But not me. I haven’t set foot in a 720-anything in 15 years. Not even once. And I hear now you don’t even get an icky meal to complain about. Just some peanuts and a soda. Or booze.
And all this silly quaking is in spite of the fact that I once took off, flew and landed a tiny Cessna (with an instructor) just so I could write about the experience. And that I’ve shot watershed news photos from the windows of a small plane piloted by a testosterone-powered arsehole as he banked it low and nearly sideways over the high Sierras. Both times I was scared nearly spitless, but way too busy to worry about it.
Anyway – this will be my last post for a while. I’ll be back, oh, around May 6 if the plane does all those ups-and-downs correctly. If it doesn’t, it’s been nice bloggin’ for y’all. Toodles.
But since it’s more likely I’ll get there and back again without suffering more than cramped knuckles, I’ll tell you all about my trip to DC when I return. I can’t think of a better way to bust through writer’s block than facing down personal cowardice twice, can you?