I woke up today extra early in the morning to take Pangeran to the airport, equipped with nothing more than two hours of sleep and what I believe are top-notch sleep-driving skills. (It should really be against the rules to even be behind the wheels that early.)
Pangeran, headed for Bangkok to catch a football game, was scheduled to depart from the newest airport terminal which, luckily, allowed non-passengers like myself go as far into the airport as before the boarding lounge. So there we were, buying time before our goodbyes, sitting comfortably at one of the coffee shops that lined the second level of the building. Him with his traveling backpack and I with nothing more than an empty oversized totebag if not for my phone, wallet, notebook, a novel, and other tiny pieces of trash.
As we were trying to engage in a meaningful conversation with the little sense that was able to register at that hour, I couldn't help but notice the excitement in all the other people around who mostly seemed to be summer travelers, what with all that overly cheerful chattering and their shorts and their flip flops. Families, a group of girls, a dude in that tacky hawaiian button up -- all very consciously smiley. I mean, aren't humans supposed to be the least enjoyable creatures at 6 a.m.? Hah.
Immediately I could feel myself being overcome with jealousy over things that would otherwise have been an aggravating hassle; how they struggled with their big chunks of luggage, how they had to take lines after lines after lines before finally getting into the aircraft that would take them away, or how they had to simply wait -- there is no party pooper like 'the wait'.
It barely mattered how early in the morning it was, how many beds have probably been left unmade back home to ensure a timely, if not early, arrival at the airport. The exciting possibilities collectively shared by these vacationers had done what no amount of caffeine could. They were going somewhere, and for a good numbered days they will hold license not to give a shit to this mad city I'm sure we all share equal love and hate for.
I wanted that. I wanted not to take my drive back, let alone run the series of unexciting school-related errands waiting to be done. I wanted to break from the cycle of daily routines I have repeated over and over in the past few months and feast my eyes on new sights. The corners of a different city, the street kids of a different town, the blinking lights of a different set of skyscrapers, or maybe, very simply, just soft, white sand.
The overhead speaker continued to announce flight after flight, late passengers, one after the other and I listened intently, consuming every word; every city named, every stranger called.
In that little airport coffee shop I sat with my cup of caramel latte and a slice of classic cheesecake which may not do my longing much justice, if at all, but tasted so divine it was a mini-holiday in my mouth.
So I repeated in my head that today this will have to do.