On the plane. Things are a bit cramped- of course the people in front of me are reclined so I’m resting my computer on my lap rather than the tray table. It’s 6:30- we’ve been in the air for about an hour now. An hour already, somehow. I dozed off for a few minutes or so, though I’m not sure how long. I think that’s a good thing; it means I’m relaxed.
We’re flying over the ocean, and it’s an exquisite site. Though there isn’t much to see, this is certainly the first time that I’ve ever flown over open ocean so far from land. It’s hard to tell where the sky ends and the ocean begins- all I can see is a gradient of blues and grays, with the occasional billowing cloud of white.
We pass over islands, and I imagine what their names are. One wasn’t far off the coast of Miami, and I wonder if it is Bimini, since I’ve heard of overnight booze cruises that dock there. Another island is larger, with some fields that appear to be agricultural. Cuba? I think to myself. It’s moments like this that I wish I could remember world Geography.
When we boarded the plane, we were asked to fill out sheets with our personal and passport information. Many times now I’ve written down my passport number, and I somehow still don’t remember it. I’m learning very quickly to keep it easily accessible. Unlike domestic flights, here you need the passport at every step of the travel process; checking luggage, traveling through airport security, and even boarding the plane. I’ve hurriedly rummaged through my bag enough times that I’ve relocated it to a more convenient pocket.
Despite my amateur mistakes, I feel more at ease now than I have in some time. My nerves have subsided, and I’m finding that other feelings are starting to take over. Excitement, of course, but that’s not all. It’s more than that. It’s a feeling that I’m taking the right path for myself. That I’m embarking on a great adventure that will be wholly beneficial. There’s no downside to this trip. And when I realize that, I’m also surprised to find that despite the bittersweet parting from friends and family, I don’t want to go back to the US. I don’t wish I was in Miami or Vermont right now, even though I’m far from my comfort zone. My inherent flight response is quiet at the moment, replaced by the feeling that I belong on this plane. And simpler feelings, like hunger, are coming through too. I’m going to take that as a good omen, and it’s arrived just in time for dinner.
Dinner: chicken with potatoes and green beans, a roll with butter, a small salad with dressing, and a brownie. The chicken and potatoes were scalding, but tasty all the same. Isn’t it funny how the portion was about the size of my palm in total, yet I’m still satisfied? I ate it so fast I didn’t even want the brownie. Better to save that for later.