I have a love/hate relationship with flying. Once up in the air I am perfectly fine…I’m like a little kid with her face pressed against the pet store window. The perspective is, obviously, new and different and I just sit and stare in awe at the world laid out before me and marvel at His goodness and creativity.
There is the whole taking off and landing business. The litany of “I don’t want to die. I don’t want to die.” is broken only by the chorus of “I wish I had written letters to my kids telling them how much I love them so they’ll be comforted after I die in a fiery plane crash.”
Like I said though, once I’m in the air I am fine. The first leg of our trip we had the company of our friend Al. As you can probably tell he and Rob were thrilled to be up and among the general population at such an early hour.
The timing of our flight gave me a view of sunrise that I have never experienced. I watched the sun come up over the clouds. It was quite simply amazing.
I’ve been a cloud gazer all of my life. Clouds can project such drama in the sky.
They fascinate me with their various forms, shapes and textures. I point them out frequently to my kids so I was thrilled to take this next image and show them the “top” of the clouds.
As far as the flying part, it was completely and thankfully uneventful. (Side note: I always con myself into thinking that it isn’t so bad, that I was just worrying about nothing and the return take off and landing won’t be a big deal and I will be all things calm, cool, and collected. Um, no. I still go through my song and dance of not wanting to die. Every. Single. Time.)
I discovered on this trip that my beloved has a serious affection for airplane cookies. Whether I wanted anything or not I am to always smile and request the cookies.
A few observations about flying: Airline stewardesses are not hot young things in spike heels traveling to exotic locales. Middle aged women in comfortable shoes with kind voices was the actual norm. Observation #2: Planes are ridiculously noisy and extremely cramped. And don’t get my started on the bathroom. Hollywood takes a lot of liberty in their portrayal of flying.
We flew from Pensacola to Atlanta, Atlanta to Portland, Portland to Seattle, and Seattle to Pullman, Idaho. I’ve never been to the northwest before and the landscape was so foreign to me. Looking down from 30,000 feet shows a crazy quilt like pattern of farms and fields that at this time of year were warm with browns and greens. (There is a blue tint to airplane windows so please forgive the odd cast of blue to some of these.)
You could see the pattern of irrigating the crops and how it made some quirky growth patterns. I laughed and took this image for Sam because of it’s pac man shape.
I’ve grown up on the gulf coast which is known mainly for beaches and not its rivers. I am not a river person. I’ve realized over time that this is because I have never been exposed to real rivers. No offense meant to all my local friends who are river people but there is no comparison to the Blackwater River here and what I saw of the Columbia River. It’s like comparing a dirty scraggly headed street urchin to a princess.
And the mountains. Oh, my goodness. Utterly amazing.
I also have a new working definition for the phrase, “middle of nowhere”. As far as the eye could see there were vast empty hills. And then, right smack dab in the middle of it sat this little town.
The airport is in the middle of a bunch of wheat fields. From a photographer’s standpoint the light in the northwest is completely different from here in the south and absolutely wonderful. I don’t know how to explain the difference but it’s there.
We turned left. But that’s another blog post for another day.