The Places You Go & The People You Meet

Oh Good Heavens!  I met quite the guy on my flight to Charlotte on Monday. Picture a cross between a hippie hobo & drifter.

I should have known the awesome that was going to be my first 30 min. when I sat down & sent this text to Matt:
“Just boarded.  Love you! (ps, the guy next to me smells like bacon)”


This is what my next text to Matt said “Just landed..OMG!  The bacon guy next to me”

Matt: “what happened”

C: “totally odd.  I made notes – blog worthy.  Smells like bacon & campfire with a splash of vomit & menthol”


We are sitting & waiting to de-ice.

Guy: I think there is air coming out of the vent, want me to turn yours on?
C: No, I’m ok, but thank you”

Guy (sort of mumbling, but loud enough for me to hear):  I’ve been in -20 degrees, so when I’m inside, I get hot really fast

C: oh, ok.  Did you want to use my air?  I’m comfortable without it.
Guy:  Yes, thank you!

Guy to lady on the aisle: Did you want your air on?
Lady: No, I don’t.

Guy: Can I use it then?
Lady: You can open it a little I suppose.

I’m now playing a mind numbing game of “loops” on my phone.

Guy: is that some sort of mind game?
C: No.  I just need to get a square of the same colored dots and then I get points. I need to get as many points as possible in 60 seconds.

Guy: oh, looks cool.  I used to have a smart phone, but it had to many functions, so I returned it.  I do have a phone that texts.  The kids in Hawaii on the organic farm I once worked on told me.  I think it’s kind of fun to text & receive them.

We made some small talk, whatever.    He then proceeds to tell me he booked a 6 day layover in Denver, which he wished he hadn’t.  He planned on hiking, but it was -20, so he couldn’t.  Also, because it was -20, all the hostiles were full.  He spent the last 6 days in a warming house.


6 days in a warming house you say?  Ok…you now have my interest…
I found out he’s on his way to Savannah, Georgia where he plans to stay on the beach until after New Years.  He then will fly to Israel.  Last time he was in Israel, he was walking along the shore when a guy came up to him on his road bike.  They started talking, and the biker told him to give him a call when he got to Jerusalem, but not on the Sabbath.   Guy got to Jerusalem a few days later, which was the Sabbath.  He called the biker the next day & then stayed w/ he & his wife for 2 months.  This was 23 years ago.  He’s going back & hopes to look him up, even though he’s lost his address book with this guys info.  Hmm, wonder if he’ll find it.


This guy’s last adventure involved mountain biking through Oregon in search of wild horses – one of his favorite things.  He had rode for days, to no avail.  Finally, one of his last days, he came upon this tiny town (with only a gas station) & that is where he met the most amazing family.  He bought himself a 6 pack of Coors Light at the gas station, sat under a tree, popped a top & started playing his ucalaly.  After a few minutes, he heard some noises & when he looked up, there was a family of horses.  The guy thought for sure they were ranch horses.  But something about the majestic look of the mare led him to believe & confirm they were wild horses.  The foals were very intrigued by his music.    Mind you, when he’s describing this horse, his eyes are shut & he’s going to a far back place in his brain & recalling.


In the midst of this, he’s all up in my personal space looking out the window (I had the window seat).

He said “You know, I should have asked you to switch, I love looking out the window”
C: “the fasten seatbelt sign is on, we better stay put”

Guy: Wow, look at that sweet terrain, we must be over Nebraska

C: You mean that flat terrain of farms?


I also learned he used to journal all of his experiences, but that to got to be to much to carry.  He now does it via voice recorder & has over 1000 hours.  However, he’s bored by most of his ramblings as he listens back.


I was not fully bored with them, until this happened.


Guy asked me what I did for a living.  I said Engineer.  He was stoked I was an engineer.  He loves physics.  In fact, over Thanksgiving he spent 2 weeks with one of his best friends who is a lifetime physics student.  He spoke all week to this guy by writing physics equations on a wall covered in white boards.  This guy proclaimed an immense interest in matrix physics and particle science.

Here comes the clincher – he wanted to discuss the concept of the speed of light.  He gets it mostly, but there are parts he doesn’t & thought I could help him out.  No…JUST NO!  no.  The speed of light is Physics III.  You know, the class I went into as a junior, still eager to learn more physics, sat in the first row like a nerd I always did – I soon found my place in that class…in the back…where Professor Korn wouldn’t see my constant look of lost and probably nothing behind my eyes when he looked into them because I was that far gone.  This class put me in my place and made me want to cry

It brought back a horrific 12 weeks of my life.  So instead of going back into a deep dark place along with curling up in my seat in the fetal position & rocking back & forth, I simply said:  “I’m not even sure how they get the picture to my TV…”


The guy fell asleep shortly after.  phew…dodged that bullet.

By about 2 hours in the flight, I switched between plugging my nose & holding my breath.  His bacon/campfire/vomit/menthol smell started getting to me AND I didn’t have any air to help dilute it…air stealer.


bacon guy




One Response to “The Places You Go & The People You Meet”

  1. BethAnn says:

    Your art work is really quite exquisite here, as was your account of physics III.

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