Trip Start Sep 28, 2011
332Trip End Ongoing
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London Luton is pretty user friendly and it isn't long before I'm strapping myself into a tiny seat and shitting myself before take off. Thank fully I don't have the added anxiety effects of dropping two Valium, so I can simply sit back and wait for my imminent death. I really do attempt to close my eyes, but even if I do manage to briefly drift off, I'm always jolted awake again by the thunder of the flying bemoth as it rattles down the runway and into the sky. Every little noise sounds like a malfunction, every shudder of the craft surely a sign that it's all over. Perhaps the pilots lover jilted him at the alter and he'll nose dive into the English channel with nothing to live for. Maybe someone will leap up and shout "Allah!" Maybe We'll fly too close to a mountain and have to eat fellow passengers to survive. Maybe I watch too many movies.
Landings are not as bad. I'm coming back to earth, so I know if the worst happens I can just tuck and roll. There is that short moment of silence just before the wheels touch down when you suck up breath, then you're on the ground and the brakes kick in. A rush of power slows the velocity of the aircraft and you've made it. That euphoria is truly wonderful, coupled with the knowledge you are somewhere new, and you're alive to enjoy the next adventure. Then you get hit by a tram.
Lisbon is blazing hot. I've come from rainy London, and I'm already ruing the choice of clothes. The shuttle bus into town is overcrowded and sweaty, and I can't wait for that cool shower and ice cold beer. Nor can I wait for my companion to arrive. Katty, to give her her proper name, whom you may remember as Frauline Eins from my cavorts in Peru. I asked her a number of weeks ago if she would like to join me for the festival and she foolishly said yes. If all goes to plan I will be attending her sisters wedding in Germany a few days after. Could I have found what I'm looking for at this early stage? Is my journey about to come to a premature but romantic end? Time will surely tell.
"What time does Lisbon close?" I enquire to a bar tender some time later. "Lisbon never closes" she laughs back. I've got a funny feeling the next few days are going to be very messy indeed.