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Monday, November 16, 2015

Brain on Blog...thoughts from the flight to California....

Brain on Blog…..
I’m sitting on the airplane wanting to nap but as I close my eyes my brain lights up.  My brain wants to process, share, document, capture, explore what I’m seeing, thinking about, experiencing. The place and way I do that- blog.  I don’t journal- I’ve tried that but never keep up with it.  It must be the extreme extrovert and accountability of posting that makes blogging work, appealing.  Maybe also the closure part of my behavior preference- get it down, capture it- move on.  The J in me for my MBTI friends.
Early flight- 6 am, which meant a 4 am alarm, out of the house by 4:30, parked and through screening for 5:30 am boarding- bonus, time for coffee. But should I have done the coffee- it is wake up, get going routine. It is delight and comfort too.  I liked the dark drive, the quiet shuttle- but the airport was wide awake, very bright and bustling.  Now the cabin lights are dim, the Midwest below dark and peaceful.
I do like to travel.  This seems to be the biggest question people have about my role at Denison.  I traveled for Federal-Mogul- the company I worked for after college, ten years, and four positions one with travel at its core- training and development with Columbus as home base- I went to the facilities needing my support- Tennessee, Mexico, Bradford in the UK, Southfield, MI.  Working for an international company, moving to a place where I knew know one- all meant travel was part of the package if only to go home for the holidays.  And then my first role at Denison with the Alumni office- planning events around the country- that too was focused on travel.  Joe’s work post Denison was all about travel as well- but now he is happy to have Dublin, OH and Granville for his work focus.
So my brain is on why I like to travel.  I’m a why person- again with the MBTI- my ENtJ is showing.  When I see something I like about travel I capture it- my brain says- oh yes, this is why!  Sitting on a plane just getting to think, contemplate, taking in this peaceful beautiful site from up above.  The lights of a sleeping, resting, night time/early morning city are beautiful.  I really do like window seats when time allows and I’m in the mode to get comfortable, taken in the sights below. I love takeoff and landing and finding my position. Lately we fly over OSU a fair amount when landing at CMH and it is cool to see the stadiums- baseball, the shoe plus it gives me my bearings! 
After reading the Jerrie Mock book Three Eight Charlie (while flying!) I pose the question to myself- do I want to learn to fly myself?  If I am so enamored with the activity?  I don’t think so- I think I like to be flown.  If Joe wants to get his pilots license I’d fly with him.  I love the fact that Jerrie talked about writing letters, typing, while in the air- wow, I didn’t think about her having the time to do that while in the air.  I heard at some point the recognition of her introvert- being able to spend so much time alone in a plane aligns with that behavior preference I’m not sure I could do that being the extrovert I am. I also have no desire at this time to learn something so complicated. Maybe in the future- the learning I’m doing now for my new job is rewarding, fulfilling and time consuming enough.  I like the idea of learning how to fly- I’ve just really come to understand the physics of it but my brain goes to the magic of it-fabulous concert. Hip Hip hooray for all those that figured it out and have developed, innovated us to a place that I can be sitting here x miles above the ground sitting and typing while sipping coffee!( And hooray for the innovation of computers and lap tops and the ability to type instead of write!)
Changing topics- traveling in the dark….I believe I am a natural night owl.  I get energy to do things and can stay up late. I really don’t wake up naturally and ready to go….that 4 am alarm was tough. But something about getting up in the dark, the quiet of the house, the darkness feels quiet, peaceful- not always- sometimes I’m over tired and lonely- the darkness is not a comfort but allows me to sleep and bring a fresh new day.
So this is where I am, where my brain is – this is what my brain wanted to share instead of resting, napping in the quiet darkened cabin of the plane propelling through the night/ early morning sky.
Other points to note- to coat or not to coat.  Great forecast for California this trip- grabbed the coat to be comfy in the car- Granville morning was in the 30s per the car temp- glad I did!  Was thinking I’d leave the coat in the car….am I glad I didn’t! The plane is chilly and I love the blanket feel as I tuck the coat over my lap.
Cheers for Southwest- I am so pleased to be experiencing a direct, non-stop flight to Oakland! A Denison parent raved about this new addition to SW’s offerings and I agree! Last week’s flying west to go east and plane changes making a whole day of travel out of what should been faster does make me pause.  I don’t think of the “line up by number” as a cattle call- I see it for the good process it is. I love how we exit the plane in order too.  I feel flying on SW is fun and civilized- a positive regard for taking turns- but fellow travelers and great snacks!  These 100 calorie snack packs make me smile.
We’re not even an hour into the flight- I’ll check back after 4 hours in one place- I might not be so Pollyanna about this opportunity/component of my work.  The reality is I embrace that my desk will always have to-dos, my house, my kids, my body- we’re never caught up and we don’t want to be- that is where the challenge and growth happens.  However travel lets me sit and type, think, work, read- while being active- moving and going somewhere to be with good people, connect them to good things. Yes I like to travel and I’m glad it works in my life on Newark-Granville Road. I’m grateful to all that make this possible - Joe, Clare, Peter, Sally, my colleagues Kelly plays a huge role and I’m grateful for the support and partnership and time to contemplate and explore my thoughts.

What a gift to travel like this just before the holidays.  I can take it in to prepare, ease into when I’m ready to go all out Xmas. I love November for November and Thanksgiving- but the world gets into gear so those of us who do Xmas in December can jump in. Those uber planners, get it done early- jump in now or sooner. Our neighbors next door have their tree up, the kids love to tease me by selecting the Xmas music station on the radio- I’m quick to get it off and that makes us all giggle and smile- how I love time with my kiddos like that!  Nice memory to bring back as I depart from them for a few days….the hardest part about my travel but thanks to a great husband, care providers, friends, relationships that matter- I can do it.  Technology helps too- texts and calls- not so much face time….maybe I’ll try that this trip although time zone differences have an impact.
I’m loving the sunrise from the sky- another bonus of this early morning flying thing. It makes me remember back to early exercise days and the reward of dawn.  Leaving the house to exercise in the dark was hard but all worth it.  When I went to bed for five hours last night, I went back to the place with babies.  When they had to eat in the middle of the night- setting expectations – realistic expectations is key to our happiness, planning with room for wiggle and adjustments.
Just read Oprah’s December O Magazine – some good things, quick take a ways to capture. If I had my journal with me- I opted to keep it at home this trip…hmmmm mistake or not?  Still figuring out what to pack and how- look forward to getting it down.  A big help is my new travel purse. It is small enough to fit into my carry on- SW can get serious about only two.  It goes across my body and makes keeping/finding what I need- driver’s license, credit card, phone fast east. Gives me a place for receipts and cash. Colleague recommended this and made all the difference. I welcome travel tips! Hmmm Maybe Oprah should do that…..

Bonus- whole row to myself….not just a window seat but the middle for my stuff..and I love to use that tray table. Also two easy escapes to the rest room with no one in the aisles- lucky me!  I’m getting my daily water intake in one flight

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