We're heading out tomorrow morning early, on a flight to San Francisco. We're giving a talk and slide show at an event at Draeger's, in San Mateo, tomorrow night. The next day Jeffrey continues west, to Thailand, and I turn around and come back to Toronto.
How strange, that we can fly around like this, transporting ourselves around the globe. It is a little unsettling, and it should be (and not just for carbon footprint reasons). The moment we start taking travel for granted, we're in big trouble. It still has a magical feel to me, even trips like this, to a place in North America that I have been to a number of times...
Maybe it's the possibility of encounters with strangers, unexpected conversations, glimpses into other lives. That for sure is a big part of it. And perhaps too it's just the remarkable transplanting that happens when we arrive by plane somewhere completely other, and then are able to walk and drive around as if we'd always been there. Surely it should show, I sometimes think, the fact that I've just stepped off a plane and am finding everything new and different here. But it rarely does, or at least not so that anyone would notice!
And of course it's always good to remember what a small proportion of the people in the world ever get to fly in a plane. This Tibetan nomad girl, whom we met in the Changtang, the huge plateau of western Tibet, probably never will, for example.
On another subject, our friend Kaz dropped by today, a lovely surprise. She's begun to write poetry again. As she says, it comes from an entirely different place than prose. I find myself envying that deeply sure artist's confidence of hers, and also grateful that she is enriching the world for all of us.