We’re flying 14km high in the sky at a speed of almost 900km per hour in a tin can containing hundreds of gallons of highly flammable liquid, passing over the Atlantic Ocean, Greenland and all of North America enroute to the Pacific Ocean and San Francisco. It’s a morning flight, the sun is shining in a clear sky….and these people have the blinds down. I have an aisle seat so it doesn’t make a whole lot of difference where I’m sitting – apart from being stuck needlessly under artificial light for half the day – but this just irritates me a little. It’s as if the 8″ LCD showing of “Tomb Raider” (or whatever) in the headrest of the seat in front is actually a serious contender for the amazing spectacle unfolding all around us.
Anyway…I’m still impressed that we can walk up the steps in cold, wet Dublin and emerge just ten hours later on the far side of a different, sunnier, continent. Maybe I’m turning into a plane geek but, the deceptive immediacy of internets and video conferencing aside, this is really far away. 6000 miles! What if the planes all gave up tomorrow? It’d take weeks if not months to sail back to Ireland; not possessing those skills I could never do it myself…what if civilisation itself crumbles during the next five weeks (looking more likely every day!)? I’d never make it back!
Anyway, suffice to say I quite like being back in California. A few weeks of work in San Francisco followed by a couple of weeks of holiday somewhere nearby should be good for the soul. The flight, only two thirds full with plenty of spare room, was comfortable, “Once” on the laptop was a very pleasant diversion and curious reminder of home and now, having taken BART into the city, I find my new home almost directly underneath the approach to the Bay Bridge in the SOMA district near the centre of town.
The weather is fine and the city full of possibilities.