All posts filed under: Xavier Masson-Leach

Long Haul Perceptions

As a child, the first thing I remember thinking about flying was that it doesn’t feel like flying. The final acceleration up the runway was promising, but before we reached anything like the speed I thought we needed to take off, the plane just stepped up into the air. I waited for the sensation that I had never experienced to arrive – the sensation of travelling at high speed across the sky – but the feeling of movement diminished to almost nothing. The stewardess had already clicked out of her restraints and was handing out orange juice and reassuring smiles; the lights were dimmed and the fan above my seat whirred; people walked around the cabin in their socks. I knew we were travelling to the other side of the planet, but when I tried looking out the tiny window it was like peering through an ice cube. Even clear of clouds, the earth was faint and warped, the outlines of ridges and rivers unrecognisable as anything I had seen on a map or from …