Thursday, June 24, 2010

California Dreamin' (or rather, the adventures to and from)

I just got back on Tuesday from a short trip to California for a small family reunion. It was really short, but also really good. Plenty of good company, good food, and, in general, good times.

On the way to California our flight was long enough for them to play a film. Sometimes the films on flights are good, but it's sort of a hit and miss business. This go around they played Invictus. Invictus is a film surrounding the election of Nelson Mandela and the unification of South Africa through the 1995 Rugby World Cup. Given the present location of the Football World Cup, I thought it was cool to just learn a little more about the history of South Africa in this way. Not to mention that it was a pretty good movie.

The poem that plays a small part in the movie, but a big part in the overall idea of the film, is also entitled Invictus (I know, you're shocked that it has the same title, as if the film was named after the poem.). It is a beautiful and inspiring poem.


Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matter not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

William Ernest Henley

As a side note, I realized while watching this film that I'm completely addicted to the Internet. When I'm watching a movie, even though I sort of enjoy suspense, I don't particularly like it. As in, if I can, I'll look up the movie to figure out what is going to happen and then after reading the spoilers and plot summaries, go on my merry way and enjoy the movie. As I was watching Invictus I kept wishing I could look up the end result of the 1995 Rugby World Cup. But I couldn't, and I still survived.

On the way back from California we were flying out of Sacramento, trying to catch the 12:40 red eye to Minneapolis and, of the three of us, I was the only one who ended up getting on the flight. Fourish hours later we arrived in Minneapolis. At this point I had gotten almost no sleep (maybe an hour and a half), and had jumped forward two hours, as if I were pretending that I had had the opportunity to get at least five hours of sleep (since the flight time was from about 12:40 to 6:20). I walked to my connecting gate and sat down to wait for my second flight to leave.

So, I'm badly sleep deprived and sort of feeling queasy because I'm hungry and yet recognize that it is too early for food. As I was sitting there a man came and sat down next to me and tapped his foot along to the roaring music coming from his iPod. At some point after he had been sitting there for awhile he said something. I kind of ignored him because I assumed that since his music was still blaring, he couldn't possibly be addressing me. But then came a "Hellloooo. Are they boarding yet?" I turned to him, obviously surprised, and realized that he had stopped his music and had even pulled out one of his ear buds to ask me this stupid question. I finally replied that I didn't think that they were boarding and he laughed at me and said that I must still be in "security shock." I responded that it was probably a lack of sleep rather than that and he just continued to laugh at me.

As I continued to mind my own business after that (his music blared on) he chatted with a couple heading to Virginia next to us and mentioned "security shock" again. I don't know what this guy's problem was, but neither the couple, nor I, had gone through security in that airport. Both of us had come through from another airport. Anyway, I got on my flight and shortly into the flight this guy had somehow lost his iPod shuffle and had one of the flight attendants down on her hands and knees with a little flashlight looking for it. I just laughed a little bit and was glad I wasn't sitting next to him anymore.

While I had a fantastic time out and about, I'm glad to be home where fairly sane people live. :)

1 comment:

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