Thursday, October 21, 2010

Off the wagon and back on again

No don't worry it's not that kind of thing...

But this week the flugelbindery sent me on a flash trip to DC, and for a few minutes here and there I felt like an addict reintroduced to the drug you've learned to love and hate. Though not in the big leagues of work travelers, I've done my share of the shuttle: New York - Boston was a weekly ritual for a long while, and then NY - DC as well and of course monthly trans-Atlantics for a few years. I had the uncomfortable feeling of recognizing the old me in some of my fellow passengers: shuttle veterans who know the flight staff, regulars who know exactly what they're going to drink or which snacks they like and exactly how many. Not unlike George Clooney in Up in the Air, I quickly recovered my instincts for going through all the security screening without missing a beat. Even the slightly antiseptic, stale smell of the aircraft seemed vaguely comforting and familiar. In short, I was off the wagon.

But then this morning as I woke at 5 am just a few minutes before my alarming was going to ring (yes, that is the worst part; I get so wound up that I end up waking up before the alarm no matter what time I set it to...), the charm had worn off and I was happy to be heading home.

Actually I'm staying in Boston this weekend, and the weather is getting cold, so it could well be one of those stay at home, cook, Netflix, cheese and wine kind of weekends. A good antidote to a hectic week...



*         *         *

When I travel, the people I admire are those who are beautifully composed, present (i.e. not distracted or frazzled), focused, and uncluttered. The last is the one I wish I could achieve the most, because if I weren't so cluttered, I wouldn't be frazzled, and I would certainly look better composed... I always aspire to travel with nothing in hand. I did do this once on a trip to India, and it was magnificent (but I was staying at home there, so it was possible). But somehow by the time add my computer and the basic clothing, it's already too much. Perhaps one day they'll invent a way to travel with nothing in hand. No clothes, no cellphones, no travel guides or work files weighing you down. Just your hands by your side,  your eyes watching, your ears listening to the sounds around you, and your mind enjoying it all.

xo

bb

12 comments:

If Jane said...

i'm in awe of the people where travelling doesn't leave a trace: they are look fresh like a daisy and ready for each new adventure.
i am always ready but i hen look like i need to sleep a thousand years..;))

If Jane said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jude said...

So much of this post resonated with me (and now I officially feel less crazy knowing I wasn't the only one doing the monthly US-UK thing - thank you!)... and I very much aspire to travel with almost nothing, or at least appear completely unfrazzled, but it just doesn't happen as much as I hope! :)

I'm glad to hear things are maybe calmer than they once were. It's been a multi-year dream of mine to reduce my travel - I think I finally managed to achieve a drastic reduction this year!

the chirpy bird said...

Traveling is an art that I unfortunately have not mastered. And you would think that with all the miles I've clocked in my life time, I'd have some kind of strategy....nope! Oh well at least I'm not alone! Thanks so much for stopping by the other day, hope you're having a fabulous week gorgeous
xo tash

MarchMusings said...

Hmm.. I know what you mean. I pack as much as possible into my checked-in baggage so travelling is fairly hassel-free. One day time travel will be possible then I'll be truly happy!

Bombay Beauty said...

If Jane -- me too!

Jude - Glad you're also easing off the trans-Atlantic conveyor belt. Compared to the shuttle, I used to find the NY-London invigorating, at least for a while. But all that travel does take its toll. I'm glad you're getting a chance to slow down a bit...

Tash - glad I'm not alone in being a frequently travel who feels that I've not yet mastered the art, or am always seeking an elusive perfection....

MM - this is always a struggle for me: to check and have my hands free in flight, but then face challenges when traveling by train, or pack everything in hand baggage but then face scrutiny and challenges in flight, not to mention a potential shortage of essentials at the other end... This summer I sent for the former: I took a really big but very mobile suitcase. It worked great until I was forced to carry it up five flights of stairs!

xo

bb

Claire * Lola Is Beauty said...

"if I weren't so cluttered, I wouldn't be frazzled, and I would certainly look better composed"

This is brilliant. Re: all those cumbersome devices, I've been thinking how great it would be to have some kind of modem or wi-fi chip inserted in your head. That's not a weird thing to think at all is it? You could even re-charge your devices by plugging them into your ear. One day...

Style, She Wrote said...

Good luck staying warm in Boston!

Jude said...

P.S. Just popped in to say you're totally wavelengthing with me today! So fun - I was writing a post on London's street style :) I might post it sooner rather than later, though...I'm feeling a bit remorseful for calling London winters "un-fun" today!

Bombay Beauty said...

Jude - I share your ambivalence! Sometimes London winters are too long and grey. But other times they are offset by London's style and charm... xo bb

Mary R said...

BB,
I love this! I travel alot too, so I relate well to your observations of other people.

I'm also impressed by the people who travel beautifully- not only in composure, but in appearance. Some go all out in looking their absolute best. I usually want to be comfortable and hide behund my anonymity, but those people who are so put together... wow.

Bombay Beauty said...

"I usually want to be comfortable and hide behind my anonymity, but those people who are so put together"... Exactly! xo bb

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