Saturday, January 15, 2011

Four couples

For some reason beyond my capacity for logic, the flight from Kht to Cai left at 5 a.m. That means we left for the airport at 2:30 a.m. and, since I had lots of work to get done before leaving, it meant I could sleep a maximum of 1 hour before heading for the airport. I opted not to sleep at all.

So at 4:45 a.m. I was in a sleepy daze in the airport, sitting in the waiting room with my fellow passengers. We were waiting together to board the flight, and at that time of night, no one was in a good mood!

So my observations were not the most acute ever, but I nonetheless found myself taken by four couples travelling with me.

Couple Number One: Elite Man with European Wife Who Most Likely Converted to Islam. Two things grabbed me about this family. Their utterly gorgeous six-ish-year-old son. And the woman's fabulous sense of fashion that was nonetheless appropriate for a good Muslim woman. She also had a safety seat for her son, a good giveaway that she was not from Sudan. They were probably visiting Dad's family in Sudan and heading back home now. But she definitely looked like she owned her new religious identity.

Couple Number Two: in start contrast to couple number one, Awkward Newlyweds Still in Their Wedding Garb. I first noticed the tiara in the woman's hair. Then the inch-thick makeup on her face and the faux diamond earrings the size of my fist. She was wearing a furry manteau over a very very long purple dress. He was pacing around her as she sat timidly - or bored - on a bench. She seemed to want to exert her self-confidence but deferred to him. They chatted and joked some, but mostly walked silently side-by-side. I can't even start to imagine how awkward it would be to together with a new spouse who one hardly knows at all!

Couple Number Three: They Have Been Travelling Together Their Whole Lives. A gray-haired couple with very practical travel gear and little concern for fashion sat quietly together, patiently waiting for the very-late flight, hardly phased by any of the commotion around them.

Couple Number Four: French Backpackers Raising a Hippie Daughter. At least that was my best guess as to the modus operendi of a mixed-race man with miles-long dreds and his actress-gorgeous wife, carrying homemade baskets and backpacks stuffed full of souvenirs wrapped in newspaper, who were leaving Sue Dan, of all places, with a friendly-looking ten year girl. They sat behind me on the plane and I heard them speaking French. As I peeked glances their way they looked like a very happy family full of fun and jokes and tenderness, too.

1 comment:

Tamara @ Living Palm said...

This post was totally fun to read. I enjoyed your "meeting" the people on the plane with you!

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