Thoughts While Waiting For A Plane

I do not like to fly.

That statement might seem odd coming from someone who regularly flies, but it is the truth. I do not enjoy flying. In fact, I find the whole act mildly unnerving.

Even before going through security, before checking in for my flight, even before going to the airport I have to be prepared. This process involves making sure there are no liquids in my carry-on bags, except for the 3.4 ounces or less ones in the quart-sized, zip-top bag that I carefully place in either my purse or an outside pocket of my backpack for easier access. I select which items will go in each carry-on bag – decisions that might not seem difficult to make, but for someone who would prefer to have all of their items next to them or under the seat in front of them, it is strategic planning.

I have to make sure to take off my shoes, remove anything in my pockets, and arrange my items in the sullen, gray plastic bins so that everything is visible. I wait to go through the scanner, not fulling knowing where the lines start and who was first, only going through the motions so as not to displease the disgruntled TSA agents. After patting down my wrists, my legs, my waist, or whatever area may have shown up on the scanner due to my preference for looser clothes, I retrieve my things and return the bins to their proper place to await another person’s items.

As I sit in the terminal reflecting on their and other airport procedures and processes, I listen to the coughs, stifles, sounds of crying babies, text tones, and conversations I am surrounded by. I am a germaphobe, and yet I am about to travel for the next few hours with nothing but recycled air circulating throughout the cabin. I resist the urge to envision the types of miasma that inhabit the air and the people they originated from. I contain my anxiety as I am engulfed by strangers.

I do not like most people, another truth that some might find odd given my seemingly outgoing personality. The key word is seemingly. I enjoy being alone, by myself, and away from the general public. I avoid public transportation as much as possible because of this.

Still, I put myself through the ordeal of flying because I love to travel. I like going to a destination I have never been before, or one that I have and am looking forward to returning to. As a teenager, I did not want to get married when I grew up; I wanted to travel.

So, yeah, I do not like to fly. I continue to fly, however, because it is a ritual that results in something that I love: adventure.

Adventure awaits…after the airtime.

 

 

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My Summer Bucket List: Project Thankful: Reason #205

June is practically over which is sad because it’s a reminder of how fleeting summer is.  With that in mind, I’ve decided to create a Summer Bucket List to make sure I make the most of what’s left of the summer:

1. Go to Canobie Lake Park

2. Have a beach day

3. Read 5 books before the start of September

4. Put together great lesson plans for classes

5. Go somewhere I’ve never been before

What’s on your Summer Bucket List?

Project Thankful: Reason #120

Today, I visited a campus in a very remote part of Rhode Island.  The drive down there was long, and the rainy weather did not help to alleviate the commute.  The roads were flanked by desolate fields barren of any visible vivacity.  Stores and other signs of consumerist civilization were absent.

Being immersed in this scene, I began to reflect on my upcoming decision on where to attend grad school.  While I am not making any final decisions, I know wherever I attend, I need to feel connected to home.  And where I went today, well, I didn’t feel connected.  If anything, I felt like I needed to get home as soon as possible.

It would be one thing to move away from home.  Disconnecting from home is something I seek to avoid entirely.

The Happiness Equation

Valentine’s Day is creeping closer.  Although I’m single and could easily be all “I hate Valentine’s Day.  Or should I say, Singles Awareness Day,” I harbor no ill will towards Valentine’s Day or my current single status.

I am focusing on me, and part of that focus involves my search for my happiness equation, figuring out what makes me most happy.  In other words, I am working on realizing what things, what areas not only make me happy, but make me unhappy if their metaphorical tanks are not full.  These are definitely part of the equation (in no particular order):

1. Travel

2. Writing

3. Blogging

4. Reading

5. Quality time with loved ones

6. Stability/security (this one is not to be confused with predictability.  For me, stability/security doesn’t mean predictability; rather, stability/security means being sure of my feelings and a general sureness of where others stand in regards to their emotions.  Stability/security is also what I value in terms of my finances).

7. Receiving gifts (And no, receiving gifts is not synonymous with spending money.  A gift is something with sentimental meaning; a pretty rock or shell found on a beach could qualify as a gift as long as there is meaning.)

8. Adventure (trying new things, going someplace new, etc)

I value each of the above areas differently, but they are all part of my personal happiness equation.  Right now, some of those areas have gaps in them, and those voids have been causing some major unhappiness.  So when it comes to my love life, I’d rather concentrate on my own happiness first before getting into a relationship because if I’m not happy with my own life, how will I have a happy relationship with another person?  Love yourself first, have a happy life, and you’ll have very little strife.  That’s the rhyming motto I’m going with.

Project Thankful: Reason #49

Thursday was a long day.  I did not get a break from students, except for my 30 minute lunch period.  After work, I had to go to the grocery store, run home to put the groceries away, pick up my mom from work, and go over to my aunt’s house.  Once back home, I had to feed my sister’s lizards since she is currently living in Florida for work.  Finally, I was able to have computer time, allowing me to check emails and blog.  By 9:00 I was ready for bed.

Friday morning I woke up, but I did not feel refreshed.  I felt raw, as though the winds of my current situation had at last worn down the layers of protection I had built up that kept me in a cocoon of contentment, so as to make me shout “You’ve got me!  I’m burnt out!  Unhappy!  No amount of time off from work will help!  It’s not a break I need, but a change and a really humongous one at that!”

I need to travel.  I seemed to have developed a need to travel at least once a year to a destination not within a day’s worth of driving distance.  This need has become essential to my happiness, and without travel I am not happy.

As my current financial situation does not allow for me to travel, I can envision my first travel trip of 2014 instead.  I would go to Florida and visit my sister and, more importantly, her puppy who is my adorable niece.  I miss them both terribly, and I wish I could see them.  While spending time with them I would visit Fort Lauderdale because that is a part of Florida that was so much fun last time I went there.  From there I would go to Crystal River to swim/snorkel with manatees, one of my favorite animals.  My Florida trip would culminate with me going to the Florida Keys, a place on my 2014 bucket list.

I’ve been to many states, all of which I have enjoyed.  Yet it is Florida that calls to me the most, makes me feel like it is the only non-New England state I could live in and call home, even if I could only live there for part of the year.

With every new year, people say different predictions about what the year will be.  For me, 2014 will be, is, my year of happiness, the year where I do not settle for contentment, instead choosing to live a life of happiness.

Project Thankful: Reason #47

My 2014 bucket list will constantly be changing, but recently I sat down and thought about what it is I would like to accomplish in 2014, where I would like to go, and why:

Reach 200 blog followers on Paranormal Perspective

Reach 50 blog followers on Living With Celiac and The Consultant

Blog more on Living With Celiac and The Consultant

Go to Disney World and stay at Port Orleans Riverside (because that resort is AWESOME, enough to deserve an all caps awesome…and because even though I went to Disney World in November, it was an extended family trip which meant more “where are you? where should we meet you?” and less getting to do the things I really wanted to do)

Go to Disney World and take in all the Disney World Christmas time festivities (again, due to time crunch circumstances, I was not able to fully take in Disney World around Christmas time, but what I did see of it…wow, I want to see more)

Go and stay at Atlantis in the Bahamas and snorkel the ruins of Atlantis (ever since I went to Grand Cayman for my cousin’s wedding, I have been in love with the Caribbean.  Atlantis seems like such a wonder to explore and to be able to snorkel and interact with the animals they have there would be a dream.)

Go to Key West (I’ve always wanted to go!  And it’s Florida, a state I would live in if I had the chance)

See the Grand Canyon (when I graduated from college, my aunt took me to Europe.  While in Europe, I went to Paris and visited Notre-Dame as well as Sainte-Chapelle.  I remember sitting in both locations, gazing at the exquisite stained glass windows with the sunlight streaming through them.  Watching the sun through the stained glass, surrounded by sites pulsing with tremendous history and spiritual energy, was a truly spiritual experience in itself.  Since I associate travelling to a spiritually inspiring place with a new section of my life, such as when I graduated from college, the Grand Canyon seems like a very fitting place to want to visit before I begin a new section in the fall when I start grad school)

What’s on your 2014 wish list?

Project Thankful: Reason #40

Today was cold.  As in cold that makes you really understand why “Winter is coming” is a fierce motto.  While taking the fifth icy blast to my face I decided to get serious about the top places I am determined to visit:

Italy
Ireland
Key West
Arizona (to visit the Grand Canyon)
Norway and Iceland (to see the Northern Lights)
Hawaii (to swim with manta rays)
Australia (to snorkel the Great Barrier Reef)
Bahamas (to stay at and visit Atlantis)
California (to see, well, California and because I have never been to the other side of the country before)
New Orleans

More places will be added as I think of them, but for now those are the ones I would love to visit.  I hope to visit at least one of those places this year.  The year did just begin.