html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml" xml:lang="en" lang="en"> From the archives: I'm not even the passenger. I'm cargo.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

I'm not even the passenger. I'm cargo.

I'm going out of town to meet my cousin's new baby. Might not be around much next week.

I have gotten so casual about travel that I am a little appalled. My cousin was trying to make careful arrangements for picking me up, but until I looked it up on Sunday night, I couldn't even remember whether I flew out on Wednesday or Thursday. I don't think about trips in advance anymore. I'll have figured it out before I have to get on the plane. I have packed, a little. I hate packing with a passion. I hate it so much more than a chore deserves. I hate it especially now, because my crap is in two cities. I invariably pack at the last minute.

I get by, I guess, because I've done so much of it. Maybe packing and travel arrangements bore me so much because I'm decent at them and they aren't intrinsically interesting? Dunno. I feel like a responsible adult would give them more than the scantest attention, but I also notice that I haven't messed up my packing or missed a plane in years. Perhaps I am free-riding on other people's attention to detail, on my cousin's reliability and my aunt's detailed back-up plans? Perhaps I am old and secure enough that if things go wrong, I'll just solve them at the time, with the internets, phone calls and money? Perhaps I'm just not concerned about how it turns out. I'll see my cousin and don't need anything else to happen. I dunno. But in several hours, I'll be on a plane to France. I've got my movements blocked out from now until I board. After that, I am not the driver.

8 Comments:

Anonymous the Other Paul said...

A baby! Is it a boy or a girl? What's its name, if you don't mind saying?

I read to some little kids (pre-verbal) for the first time last week--it was pretty fun.

5:02 AM  
Anonymous Doug said...

I vote experience. After a while, you get the hang of the travel thing.

Plus many things are easier now than they were 10 years ago. Think e-tickets, think ATMs. About the only really critical item for an international flight is your passport. Everything else is replaceable or actually better obtained at the destination.

8:14 AM  
Blogger Megan said...

Baby boy Orson. He's beautiful.

11:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

tell him bonjour and bienvenue from all of us

1:44 PM  
Anonymous the Other Paul said...

Of course he is.

8:17 PM  
Anonymous freight train said...

Yeah, experience. Once you start flying all the time - especially with the ad-hoc freedom e-tickets give - it stops feeling so important to Plan Thoroughly. I often have to travel on business, and there was one period where I went through Oakland Airport eight times in six weeks. It just stops feeling like a big deal anymore. Especially with Southwest being the Greyhound of the skies - if you miss one, there's another one in an hour.

I've even had to do a few trips now where I go roundtrip from OAK to LAX or Orange County or Portland for a meeting, then back same-day. That's really disorienting. It's hard to get over the feeling that if you fly into your home airport and return to your house, you've been Away. The funny thing is, since I produce concerts, my workdays are often 15-20 hours long. So if I fly down to LA for a meeting and then come home, I'm gone from the house for maybe 6 or 7 hours - far less than if I were doing a show in the city. Yet I feel like I've been gone much longer.

I suppose the above doesn't really speak to your post - I'm just rambling.

3:15 PM  
Anonymous jim said...

I've never run into a problem traveling that couldn't be solved by throwing money at it. Of course, I've never been to Dubai.

4:52 PM  
Blogger Noel said...

You're going to France for less than a week? I hope you get over jetlag quickly!

Otherwise, what Doug said.

11:46 AM  

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