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Posts Tagged ‘Travel’

It’s been a long while since I last posted to the blog. Part inertia, part actually off doing some serious first-draft writing for the PhD and part being busy delivering quite a few workshops in the UK and elsewhere over the last couple of months. 

Being on the road has been literal, but also (as are so many things) metaphorical. When I was at that age (“that” age was, for me, the period 17 – 23) where travel was the route out of where I was, the effort of getting and staying on the road was no effort at all. It was all new, all part of the experience, and in some cases it was the experience – and when you got there, you were still in the middle of travel.  You may not have liked everything, or not dreamt of being home again, but the thrill of being somewhere else (the trouble it took you to get there) was always more heady.

Now, and perhaps because I spent so many years living away from the UK, travel abroad seems so much more routine, and the routes that get you from A to B are only there to be endured and forgotten as quickly as possible. Especially if it is an airport. My recent trip to South Africa was probably a good illustration of this – how blase I have become (nice car to the airport, Terminal 5 – quiet, airy – the Lounge at BA, tiny bit of shopping, an up-grade to business (and some sleep!), limited interest in the on-board gadgets – picked up at the other end…. and so on. The destination remains a joy and full of joy and surprises, so at least that part of travel remains, but the getting there? Routine.

When modern travel routine get interrupted,  as it did on my return from South Africa last week, we tend to get indignant, don’t we? I think this is a mistake. Note the frustration (and note it in those around us), acknowledge it, for sure, but then detach yourself from it and you can really start to notice what’s going on. It’s very liberating.

Like, for instance, the guy (clearly a frequent business class traveller) who was behind me in the re-ticketing queue at Jo’burg airport after BA had cancelled the flight we were all (literally) on, and who felt the need to engineer his way in front of me in the queue. I don’t think his attitude will contribute to a longer or more satisfying life.

 

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