Friday, June 17, 2016

Traveler's Blues

Today, I stepped onto my 60th airplane of the year.  I'm on my way to celebrate my cousin's wedding, which is fun and awesome, but all the same, I'd prefer not to have such a comfortable familiarity with airports right now.  The Cedar Rapids gate personnel and I are starting to recognize one another and learn one another's names.

Wheels down for landing at O'Hare

Sixty airplanes in 24 weeks: that's more than two airplanes per week.  Of course, it's a bit more bursty than that, since flying out of Iowa means I basically always connect, so each trip is generally four flights.  Still, that means on average I'm taking a trip more than twice a month, and I'd really prefer to not be doing that.

It's hard to say what I would drop in order to reform my life to be more stationary, however.  Individually, every one of those trips has been a good idea.  Collectively, I am saturated.  When I am at home on a weekend, I don't much want to go anywhere or do anything.  Hang out with my wife and daughter, go for a long walk in the cornfields or the woods, read silly articles on the internet.

It feels almost shameful to me to even voice this complaint, since at its root is having a career that seems to me to be going quite well, that affords me opportunities to go all sorts of places and talk to really awesome people about things that I find interesting, and that also provides me with resources enough to go to visit my relatives and friends on special occasions.  These choices in my life, however, do come with costs, and those costs exact a toll on my body, mind, and spirit.  

I'm happy that I'm flying to Maine right now, and I also wish that I could be snugged up at home on the couch, scritching a cat curled up in my lap and contemplating nothing in particular.

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