Argentina #2 – The plane

On board I indulge my traveling idiosyncracies – I eat everything put in front of me and drink only tomato juice. I try to breathe only through my nose. I had a one-night layover in Miami, which I wasted on a protracted walk around the airport hotels and dinner at Boston Chicken.

In my imagination Buenos Aires is vast, teeming and impenetrable. I understand it to be a sunny place but I can conjure images only of a crepuscular and thickly layered metropolis, a place of perpetual dusk.

It appears we crossed the equator an hour ago. Is this my first time? No one showed up to induct me into the Sons of Neptune.

On Friday I met a woman. We exchanged numbers – she lives in New York. I can´t even remember what she looked like, or whether we really found each other interesting. I don´t think she reads much, or at least she said she´s been reading Game of Thrones for the past six months – but I´m not sure how much I care about that. She works for some comedy web channel, but I´ve forgotten the name. Despite whatever misgivings or memory gaps I may have, my fancy has jumped directly to the little intimate touches of our future domestic life together, and how people will rightly envy our happiness and the deep abiding love we found in each other. Knowing it is absurd and pathetic changes nothing. I sent her a text asking for her address for the explicit purposes of sending a postcard and stalking. She sent it to me.

In the bathroom earlier I entered a stall just vacated by a massive and none-too-scrupulous-about-hygeine Texan. The seat he left was still very warm, even after I took the time to wipe it off. Gross, yes, but it was some derivative of physical intimacy, and therefore welcome. Am I lonely?.

On the way to the airport I ran into my quasi-neighbors Becky and John on Fairmount. They both wore jeans and old sweatshirts, and worked on some kind of gardening project on the sidewalk. Becky had the ruddy flush of Autumn air and exercise; John evinced the reserved warmth and equanimity of a predominantly sober man. They asked about the bar exam and I faked mortification for a moment to no effect. They asked about the bag and I said Argentina, steak, and Malbec, not even knowing what I was talking about. I left them content in their perfect, sunny Sunday morning, thinking my life with Julia (the girl from the night previous) would surely be filled with such perfect Sundays.

I am reading Borges and my music player is on shuffle. Buenos Aires Beach just came on. Earlier an episode of Glee featured Don´t Cry for Me Argentina. After that the semiotic content of the flight grew vague, then incomprehensible. Taliban soldiers were being trained to do stand-up routines of straight observational comedy, either as torture or in preparation for the next strike. I believe I must have slept.

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