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March 27, 2012

WiFi, Travel, Staying Connected and Da Plane

I'm on a plane right now, typing this, using my laptop and I can't help but think about all those years ago when the first time I ever travelled alone, at 19, flying all the way to Finland for 3 months and how I almost never connected with my family during that entire time. I didn't call them and they didn't call me - except for maybe one time. Now, that was partly because of the way they were and partly because I was clued out about how to call internationally. I know, I know, dare I admit that now.

At that time,  I was so naive that when they offered me a drink on the plane, I declined until I realized they didn't actually cost anything. I can see myself so clearly. Oh me.

No Twitter. No Facebook. No E-mail. Thinking back to that time,  I can hardly believe it. It was like being relegated to some deserted island or something. Most 19 year olds aren't even entirely disconnected from their parents for more than an entire day these days, let alone 3 months. And, yes, I know this sounds like, when I was young, we used to walk 7 miles to school and have to milk the cows before we left.

Now, you must forgive me because, I don't often travel, especially in the last 3 years and haven't been on a plane since 2007 when i returned from New Mexico so I'm sure to be observing things that many of you just take for granted but here are just a few things I've noticed or thought so far:

1. Just because you work for Customs, is it not possible to be friendly? I mean, does one preclude the other? I'm not sure why really.
2. Don't ask me why I was thinking this but you don't usually see a pilot or groups of pilots walking around looking depressed. In those uniforms and those hats, they just exude confidence don't they? We like to think there's a correlation between mood ad being present right?
3. Watching the ground crews with their vests, I just couldn't help but think, are they like the fighter pilot boys of the ground. I saw a group of them heading out on the tarmac, as if they were just arriving at work, looking like a bunch of miners about to start their shift and I thought to myself, now that's a work environment and a group I just have no clue about. I'm curious. What do they talk about when the day is done? I'd like to know that, just out of curiosity.
4. I'm heading back to the big island of Hawaii (Kona and Hilo) and all the little hang loose hippie points in between and I'm wondering, having experienced what it's like to live on a little island myself now, how I might see things differently there. I went in 2005 and I specifically felt compelled to return for reasons I'm not totally clear about except to see a few of the places I wanted to see again, maybe even write something about them on my return.
Anyway, that's it for now. I'll keep this short. As predicted, Turbulence beginning over Northern California.\

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