Ooooookay. Here we go… get comfortable; because this is going to be so tediously uncomfortable.
5:30 wake up, grab passport, funny money, bags, shoes, tickets, each other, self, etc. and head out by 6. From Lake Stevens it takes about an hour to get to Sea-Tac, and with traffic ‘twasabit longer, but not so bad. I didn’t put my contacts in this morning so I can sleep on the flight without having my eyes revolt against the rest of my face, but we’ll see how that goes. Right now I’m waiting to take off, sitting in the plane. Delta Airlines did their best to slow us down at the gate, but we shall not be stopped! There was a mix up with the passports. Apparently my dad used my passport and I used my dad’s. I’m a bit confused because when I went to the self check-in kiosk thing with both our passports, a lady in a vest popped out of nowhere and offered to do it for me. I can’t see anything so I couldn’t’ really check her work, and the fact that my dad had lost 30 years and I gained 30 years, so when we got to the gate they had to pull us aside to verify. “Sometimes we make these mistakes.” The ticket checker person said that like it’s no big whoop, like “we lost your bags; sometimes we make these mistakes… We canceled your flight and rerouted you to Cameron, you’ll get there next week; sometimes we make these mistakes…” Whatever, though. It’s early, and I’m on the plane—can’t be too upset. I’m just hoping I can sleep. Everytime I fly I am unfailingly near a baby. Not like “Oh, there’s a baby on the plane somewhere in the inaudible distance,” but like, I’m either literally next to one or within a row of one. I always call babies ‘it’ for some reason, like they’re some sort of genderless entity—like a squishy amalgamation of uninhibited emotion without reason… “that baby is cute.” You might find yourself doing this… Maybe we need a male and female term for babies, like baebo for male and babie for female. There’s one of those baby things two rows directly behind me, about 4 feet away, on this flight (still counts as ‘near me’). Keep the streak alive! During the safety briefing, which was an automated video, people kept beeping the call button which would trump the sound of the video and made it sound like the video lady was getting censored. Two guys in the jet way were talking about “infectious diseases” and “predetermined targets—” and those are the only phrases I caught… it’s probably nothing. It’s funny without seeing (no contacts) how you view things; you can’t make eye contact, just a blank stare is all I can provide, and you can’t see the little things anymore; you have to get those from listening. If you stare down a long hallway you don’t see depth so much as just the 2D shape of the hallway and the successive signs and markers getting smaller and smaller.
Swoop. We’re in the air. Plop. I am a sleep.
I woke up just in time for some water. Plop. A sleep. The flight felt like 1 hour when it was actually three and a half. This is starting to become a really boring paragraph so far, and I realize I should probably at least acknowledge keeping the word count down so your expectations don’t get too high before stuff actually starts happening. But I’m in the Detroit Airport, and I’m bored, so this is what you get right now. There’s a cool fountain whit “jumping” water that uses a special patented nozzle to make the water squirt and look like a statue when left on. Perfect parabolas present a propensity for perplexity… excuse me… I remember seeing these things two years ago when we came back from Amsterdam after missing our direct flight. There’s a train inside the terminal, but I wouldn’t see it if it was heading straight for me. The terminal is really long. We walked to the end and joked about something cool being there, like a prize. I said there’s probably just a really nice guy with soft hands who’ll give you a handshake and say with an amiable smile, “You made it!” With blurry vision all I see is a tiny light at the end of the terminal, I can’t tell how long it is. Gate A55 looked like the 5’s were S’s (dumb laugh here). I have to follow dad wherever ‘cause I’m hopeless – Let’s go here, there, turn left, right, spin around, do the hokey-polka, click your heels 3 times. Funny how things change when I can see.
I find myself squinting a lot. I guess it’s nice to have eyelashes so squinting is super effective. A trick that I learned in elementary school is to pinch your thumb and index finger together and then press the tips of the fingers against the pad of your index finger on your other hand so there’s a tiny hole to see through between those three fingers. If you have bad vision you can look through that miniscule hole and you can see 20/20. Diffraction; google it. Maybe that’s why I like physics.
When the plane lifted off the runway dad turned to me with boyish excitement. “It worked!” When grandpa’s on the plane right as it landed he’d say “Ha—cheated death once again!” I’d like to think we have a tradition of one liners in this family.