Monday, October 18, 2010

Elbow in my side and a burnt finger

The travel experience back to JFK was far superior to the travel experience to LAX. We weren't rushed and arrived in plenty of time to check bags and even sit down for lunch at the airport. But I was amused enough by my Row 38 neighbor that I had to document it. It's a bit difficult to see in the photo because his jacket his so dark, but I think it's clear that this gentleman has crossed into my personal space by at least a few extra inches, given that for a great deal of time his elbow was pressed into my flesh. I also foolishly gave myself a pretty amazing blister on my left pointer finger because I touched the overhead light, thinking that to turn it off I had to push it in (which is true on another airline). Turns out, no, there was a button to operate the light on the armrest. And it turns out that the metal center of the overhead light seems to heat up to about 5,000 degrees. Dangerous. But, you know, great flight otherwise.

I thoroughly enjoyed and got a lot out of Reaching Out, but it's also good to be back. I'm thrilled to have the opportunity this week to do some work for my various (excessive, frankly) voluntary and extracurricular activities, all of which are both deeply fulfilling and alarmingly time-consuming. I've been at it since 8, and it's nearly 1. And I did all my tasks to the wonderful odor of paint, as building maintenance today came to touch up some areas of the apartment that were stained and water-damaged from some heavy rains. Looks fresh and good as new, a suitable complement to my attitude going into the week. I'm always very impressed by the responsiveness and quality of the maintenance here. And relieved I don't have to do this kind of thing myself, as a renter.

In addition to those tasks, I hope to catch up with and get ahead on some school work, forge ahead in my career search and, I hope, do some reflection. It's important to step back sometimes and try to get a clear mental picture of where this is all headed, and to gain some enthusiasm and focus to that end. This is probably a good week for that, with no assignments hanging directly overhead like a 5,000-degree reading light.

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