night flight to san francisco, chasing the moon across America


I’m flying way past San Francisco, but that line from Angels in America came to me tonight on the plane because we’re on that same sort of endless sunset flight–all pinkness on the horizon, forever.

I’ve been flying since I was in the womb, but it never feels exactly comfortable to me, and I firmly believe this is as it should be. We weren’t born with wings, so why should launching ourselves into the atmosphere feel comfortable? Takeoffs and landings always find me clenching Jacob’s hand, sweating profusely, and closing my eyes in a vain effort at positive visualization—normally I try to picture the lovely place the flight will take me.

As soon as we are up in the air I’m fine, and I like the rhythmic nothingness of flying, the inbetween, unstressed feeling it creates.

Until the puking starts—or, used to.

In order to stave off the airsickness that has plagued me forever, I developed a little travel kit that has prevented pukiness for years now. When I was a kid I would choke down a Dramamine, which would prevent puking but would upset my stomach and make me sleep. These days my hatred and physical incapacity for swallowing pills prevents that, so a few years ago I sat down and really analyzed what this airsickness thing was all about. I realized that what makes me so sick isn’t usually the motion (unless there is a lot of turbulence), it’s the canned, vapid air. Thus, my travel kit is all about freshening up my personal air space.

When I first realized this I would eat a lemon (preferably a meyer lemon) while taking off, and I highly recommend this method. The shocking fresh tartness takes you out of the airplane world entirely. Just be sure to hide what you are doing to other passengers, otherwise they will start whispering about you. Very tragically, recently my dentist and I discovered that my obsessive love for super sour foods isn’t doing much for my teeth, and he has admonished me to try to avoid doing things like eating lemons—apparently, even brushing one’s teeth immediately after eating sour foods doesn’t do much to prevent the acidity from eating away at your teeth. So now I huff lemon and/or grapefruit essential oil, and I spray my face with a little concoction of water and lavender and lemon essential oils that I mixed up. I also take a blend of flower essences (like Rescue Remedy) that I found in Australia called Travel Remedy, and wear those sea-band things, which seem to work OK on planes and recently did nothing at all to prevent me from throwing up five times in a ferry boat ride, so who knows.

What was the point of this ramble? I seem to have forgotten. I guess that I am really happy with my little travel kit, and wanted to share it.

After LA last week I came home and Veronica and I (with lots of help from Jacob, a master box packer) pulled off the utterly unbelievable feat of making 2,000 truffles in three days, and now I am officially on vacation for a month, escaping the snow in favor of our yearly retreat to Jacob’s dad’s house on Kaua’i. The whirlwind that began two weeks before Thanksgiving is over, which is lucky because I don’t think my body could have taken one more night of 4 or 5 hours of sleep with a 18 or 19 hour workday behind and ahead of it.

Vacation! My Hawaii vacations are always working ones, because I bring loads of paperwork and recipe ideas that I’ve been saving all year, but I am not the kind of person who would take a serious month off, anyway. I’m happier doing a little work every day.

Ramble ramble ramble! Whenever I catch myself rambling I think “Would I want to read this claptrap?” because I know that writers are supposedly at their best when they write what they themselves would want to read. I love learning about the little tricks and systems people use to live their best lives, so yes. But, oh, I just remembered the original intent of this post: I wanted to chat a little about The New Yorker, so I will start a new post for that. Or maybe I will go outside and say hello to the chickens and the avocadoes and the beach, and save that for tomorrow.

3 Responses to “night flight to san francisco, chasing the moon across America”

  1. Maggie

    I too get air sick, so I’ll have to try your anti-air sickness concoction. I hate swallowing pills too and have tried chewable Dramamine, but one of the ingredients is aspartame and I avoid artifical sweeteners, so I’ll have to give your method a try next time I fly. =)

  2. Ilene

    Lose the lemons. Get chewable Bonine (or the generic equivalent, which is cheaper). Take it from someone who has puked all over the world. Shit works, and doesn’t make you sleepy. Might need 2 for really rocky rides, but usually I only have to take one. Won’t help Maggie, because it’s got a nasty sweetener in it, but for those who can swallow pills, just get the regular one, not the chewable.

  3. Manish Sharma

    San francisco is nice place to jaourney…. its looking amazing …… and attractive…. I also have some good information about tarvel India…


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