June 19, 2009

Every time that Aaron walked into an airport, he thought that he’d have stories to tell. The lines of the building always curved in a way that seemed extraordinary, if not meaningful.

With so much space with which to extend, there must have been a reason to restrain the building in this arc. It was always the same—parking lot to a tunnel of sorts, to an escalator, to a transparent gate of windows.

After being cleared by security, Aaron’s gait became more confident.

Through the endless windows, the distance could always be seen, at least three quarters of a mile’s worth. The distance was just enough to bring the eyes out of focus and force a daydream. It was shaved grass for close to a mile, and then a line of trees. Softwood stood between the airport and an unforgiving wilderness that needed to be flown over. It was a zone of confidence, always visible.

In an airport, Aaron dreamt up stores that he thought magnificent. He had no wild dreams about imminent adventures or anonymous eyes behind indoor sunglasses, but the airport gave him a feeling of dull possibilities. For a moment, Aaron stood in a crowded but expansive corridor and tried to pinpoint the element that put him in this mood.

Everything repeated itself around the corner, and yet he always thought that there was something better beyond. He always thought that they should install a series of concave mirrors along the corridor, so that one could see everything at once. Or was it convex.

Along the corridor, all the food would be delicious, except for the food behind the stands before him. He knew from past experience that it would be greasy, but not salty, and he’d have no place to wash his hands properly.

This seemed like the perfect place to experience déjà vu, and yet it wouldn’t occur. Aaron stepped in the bathroom and it was the same as before, but he knew it was different. There had to be at least one toilet that stood unflushed. The smell necessitated it.

In the newsstand and gift shop, they don’t mind if you browse the racks and read the magazines. But they wrap all the top magazines in cellophane, and they judge you more than at the 7-11. At the airport you get used to the fact that everyone is judging you. Aaron thought of riding the Greyhound, but you pay for that kind of anonymity.

(crossposted at http://urbesque.blogspot.com/)

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