Business travel isn’t exactly conducive to deep thinking. Instead, disconnected notions pop into your head, including these from my trip today:
You don’t realize how deafening most modern airports are until you are trying to talk to someone on a cell phone from a gate waiting area.
Most parents who take kids on planes these days are saints. Between the much longer times at the airport thanks to security screenings, to the noise and commotion that won’t let kids doze off, to the embarrassing screaming fits of exhausted toddlers who don’t understand why their ears hurt when the plane comes down, a parent taking their kid on a plane trip these days must have the patience of Job — and most of the Moms and Dads I see manage to keep their cool. It’s annoying to hear the wailing of an over-tired kid, but I always feel sorry for the parents and want to go up to them and say: “Don’t worry about it, we’ve all been there.”
Did you ever notice that you only hear the phrases “stow” and “power down” on the recorded messages that play at the beginning and end of a plane flight?
On my return flight this afternoon, I was industriously chewing the ice shards in my little plastic drink cup, trying to obtain every ounce of moisture in the hyper-dessicated airplane cabin environment, when I suddenly became acutely aware of the woman sitting next to me and wondered whether the ice-chewing was getting on her nerves. I tried to chew the ice in a quieter way, but there really isn’t one.