On the plane

Once I’m in the bathroom on the plane I don’t want to leave.
I’m in first class which is wonderful, but nothing I’ve ever experienced before. A big cushy seat as many drinks as I want and a bathroom that will only be used by 8 people. The woman in front of me who kindly offered her isle seat to the big stranger next to her, then remarked how Coach was uncivilized.
In the bathroom I can see myself in the mirror. I know I’m real. I recognize me.
When I’m in my big comfy seat no one knows me. I’m surrounded by strangers, sitting next to someone for 5hours that I didn’t even say hi to as I sat down, someone Ill never see again. I become small falling into myself, one of many. I even forget what I look like.
So looking in the mirror I remember who I am. In the bathroom alone I know myself. Out there with all those strangers, I could be anyone.
Looking in the mirror, I think “I need a hair cut , my hair just looks bad these days.” That’s the person I know, the one who is only happy, on rare occasions, with her hair. Usually on the day before its going to get cut.
I go back to my comfy seat, slip off my shoes and pull my legs up, sitting how I’m most comfortable and try to hang onto the person in the bathroom, the one in the mirror with bad hair.

19 thoughts on “On the plane

  1. I love your honesty. I think people are more valued & noticed in smaller places. You have described perfectly how I feel in DC except when I’m out with my granddaughter; people see the love between us and they smile.

  2. Have a wonderful time in CA. My daughter and I always say that our hair rules our days. When it’s great, the day flies and brings many happy encounters, when it’s not….well….’nuf said. Then we laugh! You are so full of life that I never even noticed your hairstyle!

  3. I’ve only been bumped up to first class once and found the atmosphere emotionally cold…my interpretation: snooty. 😉 I’d much rather be back with the common folk, chatting and sharing stories.

    I used to ‘lose’ myself in crowds but now that I’m in my 60’s, I feel much more confident of who I am and realize that other people are just human like me. Now I talk to everyone!

  4. Maria, Your comments about your hair made me grin, and then made me a little sad. You are a lovely, talented woman with more common sense and character in your little fingers than most folks wandering around through life with “good” hair! Enjoy your trip & travel safe.

  5. I guess riding coach is where the 47% belong as the 1st class woman is quoted in your post as it being so uncivilized. I can understand why it would be so discomforting to ride with such people.

  6. Dear Maria, You write so beautifully. You express things that I have not even been able to fully think through. Reading this, I know I have experienced what you describe. Annie

  7. This is a fantastic post Maria. Although it brings a big smile it’s message is clear and spot on.
    You’re such a writer. I can’t wait for you to try a memoir. :~)(in your spare time.)

  8. Maria,
    I’ve always admired your hair; it seems so shiny and natural, and suits you so well in all your pictures. It comes through that you are very pretty, feminine, and artistic.

  9. I agree with Lynn. Have always loved your natural look, it’s so beautiful and reflects your authentic essence.

  10. Thats so interesting. I do so badly at remembering the exact facts of things still I want to share this one with you. I once was reading an advice column (dont know who wrote it) on people travelling alone. They offered a guide line for how long one should be travelling by themselves in places where they knew no one. The point they said, was it was just human nature to lose your identity when you had no reference points. Objects, routines, familiar horizons. Now of course you are with John, and I smile when I think of him as the other “mirror” you can look in. I have a hunch on another note, that John will be going back to San Francisco with you some day. I hope your time there is restful.

  11. Well Maria, all of these ladies have pretty much said it. We relate to what you sensitively and poignantly recorded about your feelings….
    but, having just met you I’ll have to add my 2 cents worth. You are indeed lovely, clear-eyed, and so grounded and authentic you needn’t ever, ever feel small. I get why you do sometimes, because we all do…we allow others’ projections to get to us…but you needn’t ever feel small. You are tiny and sweet in stature but you project a whallop of totally genuine character and spirit in person. Your hair is sweet..but I understand its’ tyranny too….hmmmmm, did you see mine!

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