January 2, 2009

ladies and gentlemen, cabin doors have been sealed

I have just been sealed into this A319 aircraft, where I am settling into seat 07-D, on NW229, nonstop service to Detroit.

I've spent the last thirteen days at home in River Forest.--

Cabin lights will be turned off, a reading light is above your seat.

--I spent all of last night packing and repacking with Teresa and Lewis, who seems to grow more and more attached to Oak Park and River Forest with each inevitably prolonged visit. After a dinner of America sushi with my family (including Lewis, of course), i began to load my suitcases for their journey back to Japan.

Overloaded with Reese's Peanutbutter cups, granola bars, sock-wrapped bottles of beer and wine, and jars of corn salsa and gourmet peanut butter, some packing revisions had to be made along the way. From 3 overweight bags, I repacked, cutting it down to 2 overweight bags, and then finally packing again, I finished with 2 bags, only one of which being overweight, and one unweildy carry-on (plus piles of abandoned snacks, candies and condiments which i hope will find their way to Japan with the help of some delivery men.

It's been a sleepless night of coffee, memories of travels past, suitcase-induced stress, and rich chocolate and coconut cakes. The sun is now rising over midway concourse A, and our plane is beginning to taxi from the gate. It's time to turn off this light and close my eyes...