The loneliness of the long distance movie watcher

I watched 21 Jump Street, Senna, The World’s End (dubbed into Spanish, apparently by one actor), Singles, Rush, the first five minutes of Veronica Mars and the whole of The Grand Budapest Hotel. Senna and Rush were particularly horrific, for all the sights of what used to count as safety equipment (a fat French bureaucrat who accepted no defiance, and some old tires piled up near the track) and when it got to Niki Lauda’s ears getting burned off at the Nurburgring. That last bit of gore had me feeling so nauseous that I fled for the toilet, trying to blame the feeling of impending doom on getting too hot/not eating enough/being sat on a plane for forever without sleeping at all.

It’s now almost ten p.m. in Hong Kong, and coming up on seven in the morning back in Seattle, so I’m feeling a bit shabby. I’ve also hit the buffers of extra luggage; 9 kilos over at Hong Kong and no Gold status on Cathay meant my credit card took another hundred dollar hit. At least they took two bags without flinching (or asking for another twenty five dollars).

However, as I strode towards security, I was sent back again, because a man with a baby carrying backpack that doesn’t contain a baby is not allowed. I did think of saying there hadn’t been a problem at Sea-Tac, but that may have been because I tricked everyone by standing near my daughter until it was too late for anyone to catch me. I also thought about asking why this was a problem when there are countless people toting much bigger carry-on luggage, but you don’t want to argue in the airport with anyone with a gun. Especially if you’ve had no sleep in the previous 24 hours.

So now, after a gloomy meal at Pizza Express (it really is not so much fun on your own) I shambled down to the gate to wait, and rue not booking myself on an earlier flight back to Singapore. Still, hopefully I get to say hello to my wife and child before I go flying.


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