Sunday, April 29, 2007

chicago breathing

The first time I get to breathe in America is gazing at a far-off city.

Eight hours into my journey, I walk like somnolent stranger through Chicago airport, unable to get to grips with the shifting timezones and thus unaware that I have plenty of time to get to my connecting flight. I'm dully aware that I can feel ripples of excitement expanding and contracting in my stomach, but the feelings are being suppressed and flattened out by the jetlag and my uncertainty of direction. I try hard to concentrate, and fail, then discover to my horror that I am in the wrong terminal building and must catch a train to another, but the unpleasantness of the realisation forces me to wake up and get a handle on things, and I discover to my relief that I have plenty of time to get to the departure gate.

I use my last dollop of nervous energy getting myself onto the train, and it is only circling the airport that I catch a breath, seeing, sitting like a dusty mirage in the faraway distance, the city of Chicago, which is breaking up from the horizon like a graph, a compact pile of skyscrapers taller than any other I have seen. That first breath is studded with excitement and intrigue, and inhaled by adjacent passengers, before we reach the terminal and I clatter silently along to the departure gate.

2 comments:

Dave said...

Hey J- Have a great time in the States- Sorry I haven't blogged in a while, but I only know so many words and need time to learn more-
I had a great time on Thursday, was really nice to see you, the lovely Ali & Anita & to meet Stev, oh yeah I think Dan was there too :-P Remember, the golden gate bridge looks just like it does on TV, so don't waste time or money, there's some great films on daytime tv in the US!(PS- comic strip is coming soon, you must regail me with any state-side developments!) D x

jonathan said...

Cheers mate! Enjoying the US so far, although I've got lots of work to do over the next few days. Nice to be here though.

Yeah, Thursday was fun, let's do it again soon.

I shall endeavour to think up some more stories for the comic strip!