This is it–our last internal voyage; the next plane I board will be the one taking me “home.” Yesterday, I find myself at peace with this final week of travel, but today, I back-peddle like none other, willing each minute and each day–really, only 72 hours left–to last an eternity.
An eternity is just what we might get, too, as the pilot pulls up sharply on our descent, aircraft clearly poised for landing but doing quite the opposite. By now, I log enough flight-time for my body to know the plane’s process and positioning simply by pressure sensations, eyes half flitted open, window shade drawn to a close.
And, what I feel is most definitely at odds with this stage of the end-of-flight game.
Squeezed into a 6 AM taxi for our 7:40 AM puddle-jumper to Lima, Graham and I have no business being awake on this über quick trajectory, so lost are we in that hazy stage between slumber and lucidity–me vacillating between excitement for seeing friends, family and pets, nervousness regarding my almost-gone finances, apprehension about returning to a place that sometimes feel so ego-driven and superficial so as to be comprised mostly of image-obsessed posers and jokers–that as soon as the upward momentum of take-off interrupts the downward pressure of an upcoming landing, our eyes fly open.
I believe we are in the throes of an emergency redirect, airplane nose almost vertical as wheels tuck under and we skip over the tarmac, clearly visible below, to circle around again.
That was sketchy.
How ironic would it be to survive a round-the-world journey only to fall off the face of the earth on my last international segment, homeward journey only one away! The plane is abuzz with jolted awake passengers, and I’m sure we all share the same thought–this airplane most definitely suffers from a serious case of the Mondays, and not a one of us is in a rush to start our weeks off with a rough landing.