I'm at the airport and I've just paid a considerable sum of money to access perhaps the slowest machine on earth to bring you this post. 13.05 now. So, what could be of any interest at 11.30am in an airport on a Tuesday night? What need has Monkey Gland? What could he possibly tell us that would whet our appetites and charm our senses? Well, actually not a great deal in the immediate vicinity save a rather folorn looking barista at Cafe Nero and an arcade machine that keeps playing the first five or six bars of Jean Michel Jarre's Oxygene. It was the depatures board that got me thinking.
Ever since I was a kid the departures board has held a fascination (9 minutes now), the promise of far far away places; Jedda, Hurghada, Bangkok. Names that seemed to speak of dust storms and white horses galloping across sand or opium dens and roof top chases in an Indiana Jones style. More often than not it I would ask my Dad what they ate in the places on the board. He would take delight in lying outrageously (4 minutes, 28 seconds). It always seemed to make our own hum drum destinations (Valencia, Alicante) seem drab and unintresting. Here I was standing with a thousand possibilites in front of me and we were off to see (and more importantly eat) the same old things.
Travel is easy now and flying a chore to be endured. Airports seem to be more like bus stations with a few Prada concessions as a nod to a luxurious past. Though, that feeling, looking at the departures board endures. Mysterious places, the whiff of spices. Time's up.