19 Jun 2010

Fly by night

A while ago, film director Marc Forster, of James Bond fame, produced a short feature as part of a PR stunt for Swiss International Air Lines. It was entitled "LX40", after the flight number between Zurich and Los Angeles, Forster's trunk route.

Well, for me it would be LX87. That's the direct flight between Montreal and Zurich, and on its mighty wings I am currently crossing the Atlantic Ocean enRoute ;-) to Switzerland. Homebound, as I am tempted to write - but then again I am not completely certain on which end of LX87 home really is. If home is where your life is happening, where your thoughts, worries and pleasures are most of the time, then I can safely say that I've just taken off from that place. But if home is where your roots are, where everything is intimataly familiar and where you can meet up in a cozy corner with old friends, then I am still 3715km away from the place. And if home is where the heart is? Then let's just say the middle of the Atlantic Ocean feels like a very turbulent and desolate place.

Not that I'd be alone up here, of course. In fact, LX87 is rather crowded once again, which is why Swiss had to change my seat assignment - duly forward. In consequence, I am typing this properly wined and dined, and relaxing in a halfway comfortable space (although, if I were to be picky, I'd complain about the decade-old seat configuration on this particular aircraft). But even if I had a fully flat First Class seat at my disposal (as was the case upon my last renconrtre with LX87), the potential for rest would be limited by my biorythm: LX87 departs Montreal around 5pm local time, and takes about 6.5 hours to reach its destination. In other words, it touches down around midnight Montreal time. Between 6pm and midnight, I am not usually asleep in my own bed, much less so on an airplane - no matter how comfortable the seat.

So I stay awake, only to arrive in Zurich wonderfully tired, merry and ready for my childhood bed. Which would be perfect, if not for a minor detail: At that point, it's 6am in Zurich, and the busy Swiss are up and awake for a new day. But no matter how excited I'll be to have arrived, if there's one thing that I've learned to appreciate in Montreal, it is the beauty of sleeping in and having a leisurely brunch around mid-day. With freshly baked Zopf, hot chocolate and Swiss yogurt, what could be a better way to start a vacation?

3256km to go...

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