Ten minutes to touchdown in the Big Easy, the Crescent City, New Orleans. A city like no other.
With the sun setting on the horizon and thunder clouds rising into the distant evening sky, Lake Verret is about to slip under the wing of this Southwest Boeing 737.
My first flight came when I was 14 and I flew on a BAC One-Eleven from London to Bordeaux, France for a cultural exchange visit. From that first flight I’ve loved to fly – except in extremely turbulent weather that is.
Having flown international for eleven years before arriving in the US, I was surprised at the normalcy of domestic flight in the mid-nineties. It was as simple as getting on a bus. For my first two years in the US I was living up-in-the-air, on a flight somewhere nearly every week. My prior international flying career was always punctuated by identity checks and security screenings. In the US in the mid-nineties the checks never impeded travel. Unfortunately that era is gone.
With today’s strictures though I’m glad I no longer have to fly every week. I guess one gets used to the checks today but they’re mostly theater, designed to make us feel safe and think that ‘they’ are doing something to protect us from ‘them’. The result is that we get frustrated with ‘they’ because we can see them and touch them (well, they touch us). But as for ‘them’, we don’t get frustrated with ‘them’ because we never see them.
I always try to get a window seat – ahead of the wing if possible. That way your view of the planet slipping by beneath you is not distorted by the exhaust from the puffers. Getting these seats is getting harder if you’re not a frequent flier but it’s still relatively easy on Southwest. Checking-in early improves your odds of being in the first boarding group and arrive at the airport early before boarding starts.
I remember paying for my mother to fly from the UK to Houston to visit us soon after the birth of our son. At age 71, it was her first flight anywhere. I still remember how excited she was at having been able to see the tops of the clouds! That thought had never occurred to me.
Camera: Canon EOS 5D
Lens: Canon 24-105mm f/4L IS USM AF Lens (B&H)
Processing: Lightroom 4.0
Processing: Photomatix 4.02
Processing: Photoshop CS5
Processing: OnOne Photo Suite 6 (OnOne) 10% discount with coupon code rdavisphoto