I’ve said it before, but it’s worth saying again.
Airport bars are bastions for creative thinking.
Sitting alone, watching people on the go. They arrive, they browse the menu with a diappointied scowl as if they were expecting a cheap, prime filet, when they knew full well that all they were going to choose from was an overpriced burger patty on a stale bun. They decide, and it’s bad enough to make the overpriced beer worth guzzling.
They drink as they wait. They look at the TV perched above the bar, too small to actually pay much attention to, but pretend anyways to be interested in the breaking news story on CNN. They answer the bar tender’s feeble attempt at earning an extra buck with a “I’m from so and so, but I grew up in so and so. I’m on my way to so and so.” The bar tender smiles and moves on to the next overpaying and undertipping customer.
Their food arrives and they stare at it contemplating whether or not its worth complaining. They decide against it with a final acceptance of where they are and commence the journey to an upset stomach at 38,000 feet.
And you sit there and observe. I sit there and observe. I read. I write. I listen to music on one of my 5 devices while I contemplate watching a movie on one of my other 5 devices.The song ends and the sounds of the airport begin to blend together. But every so often, one sound becomes isolated in your ears until it’s the only thing you are paying attention to.
The announcements. The never ending, multilungual, monotone, time traveling announcements.
“Attention, the yellow zone is for loading an unloading only.”
“Attention, Bob Bernnake please report to an airport courtesy phone.”
“Attention, Flight 324 is delayed until 7:30, sorry for the inconvenience.”
With every “attention,” you wait for your name, or anything that would have any relevance to you at all. But it never does, and ultimately it falls into the background of the rest of the cacauphony arund you.
Little kids screaming. Suitcases rolling over cracks in the tile as if they were placed a perfect distance apart to maintain the same rhythm in every airport in the world. Ever.
The sounds, the sights. The guy picking at his burger. They are all part of the bastion for your creative thoughts. It all comes together to fortify your mind. It’s an explosion that triggers something in the back of your head that says “I’m not just sitting here waiting to go somewhere else. I am here. I am part of the explosion that is triggering the same thoughts to the guy in the back of the bar that I didn’t even know was there observing me. I am drinking the same overpriced beer, and eating the same overpriced burger. I also glance up at the small TV with half interest and the bartender asked me the same questions.”
I think I am thinking creatively. But really I am just thinking. I am alone with my thoughts, but I am not alone. People all around me are on similar journey’s. They are going from here to there. They are leaving home. They are on their way home. They are on honeymoons, they are going to funerals. Family reunions, visiting grand children. But they are here.
They take their shoes off at security just like me. They think to themselves, “why do I still have to take my shoes off?” Just like me. They gather their belongings, glance all around them and head in the direction of the airport bar, just like me. Just like you.