Sunday, August 8, 2010

Enter with Caution

It’s always a dangerous place to explore if armed with a credit card, and ironically, never more perilous than in the most expensive spot: the airport. Bookstores are my Achilles heel, the one place I shed my frugal cages and load arms with crisp pages and illuminating stories of new worlds.  But still, in this alternate universe of travel where a soda costs $3.25 and an apple must be gold-coated for the price, you would think I would keep my wallet tucked away.  

And yet, not so much.  Being early always sets off the trouble, hours to waste while aimlessly dodging crying children and tourist trinkets, I wander into the bookstore.  What if I run out of reading material? What if I don’t like the books I brought? What if I’m stuck in a cottage resigned to the plot of cereal boxes? So I stroll through aisles and pull books with abandon, hypnotized in this airport world to whip out my money with a rich man’s abandon. 

I snap out of it at the check out line as he hands me a large cloth tote bag.  You know you have a problem when the airport is giving you free gifts.  This is definitely not a good sign.  I opt to graciously take my free bag stuffed with literature in favor if ignoring my thrifty self’s inner temper tantrum.

I’m on vacation, I repeat sternly.  Vacation starts at check in so kindly shut up.  She pouts, vowing retribution upon return, as I pat my new books with relief.  Ok, I’m ready.  Armed with inspiring prose and on my ay to new shores, I breathe deeply as I buckle my seat belt.  The airport world might be overpriced and sadly missing the old smoking sections, but there is something in the air.  It is fueled by hopes of new beginnings, lingering worries of what might be, and the promise that your daily life as you know it is no longer a current option. 

For today, I choose to settle back in to the ride as I crack the cover amidst passing clouds and exhale into the beauty of landing in a fresh tomorrow. 

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