BTRIPP (btripp) wrote,

Trains, Planes, and Fast Food ...

Spent most of the day yesterday on the "El" ... dragged Daughter #1 out to O'Hare with me (since I was going to have to get her to the Dojo later that afternoon and didn't want to get hung up on my way back home first) to meet Charity for lunch while she changed planes on her way from Seattle to Syracuse. While convenient (and cheap at $1.50), the subway does take about an 1:15 to 1:30 to go door-to-door (it's a five minute walk to the nearest stop here, but we have to take the Red Line down to the Loop, then go down to the transfer tunnel and up to the Blue Line platform, and then all the way out to O'Hare ... most of the variablility depends on making or waiting on each of those trains). We left here about 10:30a to meet Charity's scheduled 12:20 arrival ... we lucked out on both trains and got out to O'Hare by noon ... which was good, since the tail winds had pushed her flight in early.

After Charity got on her connection, we messed around there a bit (Daughter #1 insisted that she wanted a hot dog on top of her Happy Meal!). There used to be a really nice restuarant in the upper level of "the rotunda" by concourse G ... but it's gone now, replaced by a conference center. I guess it's a better use of the space, but it was a nice place to kill time and watch the airport, and I'm sad that it's gone. I finally had a chance to stop in the "airplane" store in the basement of the O'Hare Hilton ... I'd blown by it a number of times on the way from the train to the terminal, but had never gone in. This place is amazing! You know all those little metal jetliner models? They had HUNDREDS of them, from dozens of airlines and eras and in a bunch of different sizes. They're all pricey (a 6" long plane is like $29.00), but I had no idea what an amazing collection they had there. Daughter #1 was able to talk me into getting her a styrofoam Tweety glider for $5.00, since her Happy Meal came with cookies instead of a toy!

Anyway, we took the Blue Line back downtown, getting off at the State of Illinois Center. Daughter #1 had never been in there before, and we still had about a half hour to kill before heading off to the Dojo. Bought her an ice cream and we hung out. Then found our way upstairs (the "Clark & Lake" El stop is now built into the two buildings on either side of it) and caught the Brown Line up to Lincoln Village (where here martial arts classes are). Finally, after class, took the Brown Line back to Belmont and changed back to the Red Line and back home. I think, all told, we probably spent pretty much 3 hours on the train yesterday.

Which, of course, has quite a bit to do with the title of this poem, and somewhat to do with the contents...

                    ON TRANSPORTATION'S LOOM

                    shuffled distance
                    scattered space
                    we chart these lines
                    tracing steel
                    to give dimension
                    to static image
                    to bring vibration
                    to close context

                    so much resides
                    in subtler zones
                    where premise
                    and pretense,
                    visage and stance
                    substitute for presence
                    for being, truth,
                    and open soul

                    what minor slice
                    of twisted time
                    adheres to this,
                    what paltry fraction
                    of these intents
                    comes to bear
                    within this frame,
                    this course as set?

                    so many fibers
                    are wove herein:
                    the planned,
                    the absent,
                    the unexpected;
                    what is the final shape,
                    the pattern that forms
                    when the day is done?

                    somehow this echoes
                    of other states
                    as though a mixture
                    made of movement,
                    strangeness, norms,
                    brought forth a newness
                    which will continue
                    on in unknown planes

                             - Brendan Tripp

                    Copyright © 2001 by Brendan Tripp

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