Oct
24
2006

Flying: LHR - SYD

Actually, Ive no idea if it is the 24th, or what time zone Im in, or indeed if there even is a time zone at 10,000m. (What time is it on board the space station? What time is it on the moon?) All I know is that Ive been flying for a very long time and that when I last had the ground under my feet it was Tuesday.

After so many long haul flights I no longer find them particularly traumatic. I seem to have managed to develop a kind of Zen mind set which I put myself into that helps me to not flip out over the thought of hurtling through space in a tin tube for days on end. Commuting from San Francisco to Dublin for much of 1996 was kill or cure in that respect and Ive done the London to Australia run enough times to know the territory.

I do find, though, that there are different kinds of flights, or rather there are different types of response to being in flight for so long. Some flights are 'reading' flights, where Ill plough through a book, some are 'movie' flights where Ill watch several films back-to-back, there are 'sleeping' flights (we like those), 'iPod' flights (formerly known as 'Walkman' flights), 'eating 'flights, and possibly 'mile high club' flights but over that we should probably hastily draw a veil.

This has been a 'reading' flight so far. I picked up Mark Haddons A Spot of Bother at Heathrow and finished it 90 minutes out from Singapore. He wrote The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time which was a strange, complex and clever book that I enjoyed a great deal. The new one is chick-lit by comparison, but easy and funny, which made it the perfect companion for hurtling through space in a tin tube. Ate. Slept. Lap top.

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