Posts Tagged ‘airports’

I hope you didn’t expect from my title to see a shot of a nudist airport. 🙂  The “au natural” refers to an unedited (except for copyright) photo shot at the Phoenix airport while waiting for our Southwest flight back to the land of winter.  Even while tired and still sick, I was captivated by the shapes, shadows, and reflections in a black and white segment of a world that normally appears in color and had to grab the shot while I could.

“I suppose there has been nothing like the airports since the age of the stage-stops – nothing quite as lonely, as sombre-silent. The red-brick depots were built right into the towns they marked – people didn’t get off at those isolated stations unless they lived there. But airports lead you way back in history like oases, like the stops on the great trade routes. The sight of air travellers strolling in ones and twos into midnight airports will draw a small crowd any night up or two. The young people look at the planes, the older ones look at the passengers with a watchful incredulity.”
~F. Scott Fitzgerald


“It can hardly be a coincidence that no language on Earth has ever produced the expression “as pretty as an airport”. Airports are ugly. Some are very ugly. Some attain a degree of ugliness that can only be the result of a special effort. This ugliness arises because airports are full of people who are tired, cross, and have just discovered that their luggage has landed in Murmansk (…) and the architects have on the whole tried to reflect this in their designs.
They have sought to highlight the tiredness and crossness motif with brutal shapes and nerve jangling colours, to make effortless the business of separating the traveller from his or her luggage or loved ones, to confuse the traveller with arrows that appear to point at the windows, distant tie racks, or the current position of the Ursa Minor in the night sky, and wherever possible to expose the plumbing on the grounds that it is functional, and conceal the location of the departure gates, presumably on the grounds that they are not”.”
~Douglas Adams, The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul

And your feelings about airports and flying?

The car reeks of gasoline.

It’s the car from the service company taking us to the airport and it reeks of gasoline. Bill says it makes him nauseous. Although it’s winter, we put the windows down three or four inches. I have my nose as close to the opening as I can get without climbing on the seat. I think of the way dogs poke their noses out the window and wish I could. The driver keeps apologizing, suggest we call the company, that they’ll take more notice of a customer’s complaint. Bill calls them from the airport. He says they just said “Thanks.”

We’re motioned into the priority line—nothing has to come out of the luggage, shoes stay on My shoulder bag gets pulled aside and I follow an unsmiling agent to a table where she begins to take everything out. “Don’t touch anything once I open the bag,” she tells me. She finally finds a small pocketknife I had no idea was even in the bag. It gets tossed, leaving me feeling furtive.

The waiting area is crowded and noisy. A child screams continuously. It seems as if half the passengers pre-board, although there are mostly empty seats when our turn comes. We choose aisle seats across from one another. I get lucky—the middle seat stays free. The little dog seven rows up keeps yipping. The child, blessedly, is quiet, no doubt exhausted from her crying bout inside.

The wings are de-iced, flight attendants do their shtick as stand-up, we take off, immediately entering the bank of clouds dooming those below to entire day of gloom. We go up and up. It’s as if we’re flying through the debris in a vacuum cleaner bag, fluffy and grey. The man in the window seat half-jokes about whether he should worry that the pilot can’t see anything. We laugh.

It grows gradually lighter and finally we emerge into the sunshine that’s always on the other side of the clouds. The snow field of white fills the sky. We exchange wondering glances, smiling at the beauty.