After awhile, all airports start to look the same. Airport food court transients stare into laptops while speaking details of a life temporarly left behind into cell phones. You watch people do the same things in different cities. Everyone is the same, only clothes, accents, and incomes vary. Fellow travellers move through people movers, information kiosks, and automated security warnings. The thought that "we are all in this together but working for limited resources and space" is inescapable. Seems true about everything in life, about the outer world. Cool & synthetic voices only hint at all the bad things that are out there possibly aligning against you at this very moment. As you watch CNN on the flat screen as you wait to remove your shoes at the checkpoint, you realize that too much of anything is a bad thing. This is especially true of information and imagination.
Planes drop in out of the landing pattern. Come in low over the lights of Westgate and follow the surface streets to the airport. You are in the last few minutes of a late night flight home over a blackout patchwork of mid-western farm fields and cities fleshed out in hundreds of points of light. As the plane banks on final approach, your window dips and the horizon bobs up into view. Like a ball held underwater, freed. And at 12.45am all the cars in the parking lots below have a strange sense of solitude about them. From 500 feet all the angles are different and strange yet completely familair. The street lights throw down cones of halogen and the world almost seems automated. Still moving but without the presence of people.
And just then it hits you. That the world goes on with or without you. Your return is elusive
Under cover of cool darkness. And tomorrow you will wake up with western dust still on your shoes and those handbills from the Vegas strip still in your coat pocket.