March 28, 2018: Planes and Plotting

It’s kind of baffling to me that so many of my students have been on planes or cruise liners. I was actually the first person in my family to fly on a plane, and I didn’t get the chance until I was 22.

The truth is I love to travel. It feeds into my art and historical fascinations. I’ve already mentioned that I don’t have a loving relationship with water. So, unlike the majority if I am going to take a trip somewhere I don’t want to spend it on a beach. No, I’d much rather experience the local culture, eat the cuisine, stop by a few art galleries or historical tours. Thats MY idea of fun.

My family didn’t really do family trips. I did get to take a trip out to Wyoming (for a family reunion), and a trip to some historical battle fields once. Every where that I HAD gone was a road trip.

The summer of my 22 year of life my best friend Chelsea had taken an internship with a church plant in New York, New York. I missed her terribly. Her mother and I plotted together to visit her near the end of her time there.

To say I was excited was an understatement. I had never had a chance to visit a place like New York. It wasn’t so much the city life that I was stoked to experience (I know who I am and that’s a wide open spaces kind of girl). I was thrilled to be visiting one of the most popular cities in the world, experiencing the collective identity of so many cultures crammed into such a small space. A city of so much historical significance where more than a few american icon symbols were exhibited. A city where art of any shape and size wasn’t just enjoyed but embraced. And a city that had countless food options!

Thankfully Ginger (Chelsea’s mom) took the reigns when it came to booking the flight and hotel. Having been ignorant I would have gotten myself into some trouble with out help. I might have been able to book the flight but I would have gotten kidnaped in St. Louis Lambert airport (not to mention Laguardia)! That place, to a newbie, is terrifying!!!

I have to say, it was the airport more than the plane that had my anxiety spiking. I withheld judgement about being in a flying form of transportation. I didn’t THINK it would bother me (as I actually kind of love heights)  but you never know about some things until your knee deep in them! I was right though, actually flying was thrilling. There’s just something about looking DOWN on clouds that will always enchant and bewitch me, no matter how old I get.

We successfully surprised Chelsea. She knew her mom was coming but we kept my tagging along a secret until she walked into the hotel room to pick up Ginger. That moment, the shock and joy of her enthusiasm to see me,  was my favorite out of the three days there.

While I had a blast exploring the city my country roots stayed firm. The second I got back to Missouri I stretched out my arms took in a lung full of (slightly fertilizer scented) air and spun around  on my toes. Having space to breath and stretch had been sourly missed while swimming through the sea of humanity that is NYC.

I’d say I caught the travel bug. The next year I found myself signing up for a class at Southern that’s final assignment was a two week trip to China. I went from a 22 year old who had never flown before to a 23 year old international traveler plane hopping half way around the globe, in a span of 8 months.

I don’t know what my next trip will be, but I can’t wait!!

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