I am not going anywhere these days, hence the clearing of Europe’s airspace courtesy of Eyjafjallajökull’s eruption [check radar virtuel or flightradar24 for cool ‘crowd-sourced’ maps of our skies and the planes in it gathered from the radio signals volunteers capture] doesn’t affect me in a negative way and I only read stories about people having to go through a tremendous effort to get home [what about trains?], being unable to leave or being stuck on another continent away from their family. All that sounds rather inconvenient.
At the same time it sounds fascinating that a single volcano far away can affect air travel so profoundly and to read up on why exactly it can be dangerous for planes to fly through volcano dust [it’s hard and loads of it hits the plane at a high speed, engines don’t like it either]. And it’s even more fascinating to see that the world doesn’t end when planes don’t fly. Sure, some holidays have been ruined, people couldn’t go on business trips and the supply of some goods which are flown in, e.g. flowers from Africa, starts being affected.
Perhaps that’s an interesting experience. And once the resulting chaos and inconveniences have passed, it may make people think how many of the flights they are taking are really necessary. Possibly some of the travellers who had ‘important’ stuff to do overseas, managed just fine without flying there?
I think the flight abstinence can actually be quite beneficial for some peoeple. Especially for all those ‘important’ frequent flying managers. They just walk into some tube in London and walk out of another tube in Moskow. I think many of them lack consciousness for the vast distances they are traveling. If they are now forced to switch to the road or rail they will experience what it actually means to travel 3000 km and maybe the next time they tell their secretary to book some flight tickets they will consider if it’s really necessary.
I agree with your point on this.
But as I’m not one of the people actually living this lifestyle, that’s kind of pointless. As I am neither in the position to change it, nor able to judge the benefits of doing things this way.
Hence I can’t judge to which extent such (seemingly) excessive travel is only there to boast the traveller’s self-importance or to which extent it really is important because people are unable to achieve the same kind of communication on the phone or via e-mail.
Which reminds me, I still haven’t seen “Up in the Air” :)
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