I have a problem on my hands. I would like to hear some other perspectives, and also to bring me up to speed on the current state of affairs.
In case you happened to miss any of my rants, I am (still) engaged in an active boycott of the airlines. It has been approximately 340 days since I have last been on a plane (Delta MD-90, DFW-ONT being the last flight).
The reason I am refusing to fly is not because I don't want to or can't afford it. But rather, it's a triple reason for 1) allowing Sept 11 to happen and 2) because of the 'security measures in effect' (specifically 'ticketed passengers only' signage) and 3) as a result of items 1 and 2, I feel that a lifelong hobby was stolen away from me.
I have not been to an airport since Sept 11 (I drove through the ONT terminal parkway once and it gave me the chills).
So here's my problem. I spoke with a couple of my dear loved friends that live in New York last night. They are wanting to know when I am going to be coming out again. I told them that I don't know. That answer didn't seem to sit very well, especially since my annual Fall trip had become a tradition. That tradition was broken when I cancelled last years trip.
There is going to be a wedding that I am going to have to attend because I was assigned a key role in it (being the one that 'gives away' the bride).
I CAN'T get out of that one. But that's not until next year. I don't think they're going to appreciate me waiting 2 years between my visits.
Now on one hand, I have to think of my friends whom I love dearly and always enjoy visiting. And they always love me coming out there because they love taking me to new places.
But at the same time, I feel very strongly about this airline situation. I have a lot of conviction, and am not one to bend easily simply because standing up for what I believe in becomes inconvenient.
I explained to her last night about what taking a trip would be like for me:
It would be a very sad and angry experience filled with all kinds of (mostly) bad emotions.
When she asked what I was talking about, I explained it very simply:
What is one thing you are passionate about?
she said "looking at art".
I said now imagine that someone came along and gouged your eyes out because they thought they were seeking revenge against someone else.
Then imagine that 6 months later, someone took you to an art museum.
How would you feel?
That's exactly the same feeling I would have journeying to an airport. Seeing all of the places I used to have free access to for so many years, and all of the photo shoots I did, the excitement of getting new pictures or a new livery or whatever.
all gone. Now transformed into some kind of "Communist Totalitarian" process.
Which leads me to my next question:
What is the flying experience like now? I used to enjoy the flights and the cabin crews were usually very nice and friendly at best, and sterile and indifferent at worst.
In any case, it was just one piece of the whole travel 'package' and was usually very enjoyable.
Now I imagine the mood to have changed to one of paranoia and distrust. And I would expect to be treated as though I came out from under a rock.
5 hours going and 6 hours back is a long time to have to put up with that. And since there isn't much to do during a flight, my mind will keep coming back to the dreary check in experience. So I'll be totally bummed out on landing.
And not to mention the fact that the first thing I looked for when on approach to EWR was the Twin Towers. They were a 'beacon' to me. I would always look at them whenever I could. To me, they were THE focal point of NYC.
I've seen all of the images and video of what's happened. But you just can't grasp and comprehend the full impact of what has happened until you see it in person. I'm not sure how I would react.
I know all about the people that died and their families and the way the effects fanned out around the world and all of that. I'm not trying to say that my issues are more important than theirs or anything like that. I'm sure that everyone has their own unique thoughts and feelings about all of this; that it has affected them in their own way.
I respect all of that. This is MY issue that I'm sharing.
So if you want to discuss why my issues are petty compared to yours or everyone elses, please start it in another topic.