On your mark, get set, NOT

Airport Diaries – Part 2 

My airport diary is much like the time loop in the movie, Ground Hog’s Day. The tragic story repeats itself every time – late departures, cancelled flights and the worst – flights that turn around mid-way after fooling me with initial euphoria of having beaten the curse. As I (yet again) wait at a transit airport after being deplaned in Los Angeles while en route to Cabo,  I can’t help but wonder whether this is God’s grand scheme to force me on a path to self-improvement. Bill Murray’s time loop only breaks after he closely examines his life and makes a better man of himself. So I’m going to consider this a showing of the mirror, and start my own path to actualization –  instead of venting and complaining to my husband (who at this point believes my venting is a larger disaster in his life than a faulty plane and delayed vacation), I’m going to react in a few different ways than I usually do to airport disasters:

1) Write instead of vent: one could argue that this is another way to vent to an even larger audience than my husband, who in all fairness did sign up for a lifetime of this. But one will not argue that.  I’m just positively channeling my energy towards my new year resolution for 2015 – writing more.  T -2 months before we hit 2016, hallelujah!

2)  Start my vacation right here, right now: vacations are a state of mind. And from what I hear, Cabo, especially is. So I will kickstart that holiday state of mind, with what usually gets me there – a chilled glass of beer. Make that a mug. With the first sip, I wonder, does it matter that instead of blue water and white sand, I’m facing a fleet of planes none of which are assigned to me yet? Nope. What matters is that the splash of yellow this wheat ale brings to my life right now feels as vibrant as the sunset I’m missing in Cabo.  Net-net, we’re good.

3) Not think about the time-suck this has been: vacation time is precious and I’ve spent a full day on traveling to a place 3 hours away.  But I’m not thinking about that. I’m think about the silver lining. Vacations are departures from daily life and everyone gets the upside to this. But the downside to a vacation  is that you eventually return to reality (more widely experienced as vacation hangover). The spikes from vacation highs and lows from post-vacation reality checks fundamentally go against what “gurus” propound to be healthy for a balanced state of mind. Meditation enthusiasts believe that lesser the emotional spikes, even if it’s happy spikes, the steadier the mind is and straighter the line of balance. It’s another thing that this analogy always reminds me of a peculiar straight line accompanied by a peculiar sound on a monitor in a distinct place and state neither of us aspire to reach anytime soon…

So in a way, vacation tragedies are the most meditative way to unwind, yet stay attuned to the ultimate truth that life is a never-ending slow-mo tragedy that unfolds across the number of years you are strong enough to withstand…and for me a lot of that unfolds at airports. But if you fight the good fight to find humor in tragedies, then it accounts for more long-term happiness, the guru way.

On that note, I sign out. Having successfully preoccupied myself for a few hours as my flight gets ready to take off…maybe, maybe not. But if not, then worry not. Adios!

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