Thursday, 10 May 2018
High above a four engines aircraft takes of for far away places. I wonder however if this is a freight plane, possibly one of those UPS or such like aircraft you see dotted around airports idling away. The middle of the day is not when I would expect such to be flying however so it may be on the way to Florida or the like. Just over a hundred years ago such flights became possible, now we regard it like a bus service to far away places (well I don't as I canny afford it) and moan constantly about flight delays without considering that a hundred years ago you would not have had the cash to fly to these places. If you had cash you went by boat and took a week or a month maybe to get to the destination, risking all in high seas and dubious travel agents.
I made use of Flightradar to track a man flying to far away places. I was interested to follow his flight from Heathrow airport across Surrey and Kent and over the channel. The trip took a few minutes to travel the distance and I cogitated on how long it would have taken to walk that distance, the Roman army allowed about 15 miles as a days march unless pushed, so how long would it have taken a fit walker? It would take me until the ambulance picked me up! A few minutes travel at 500 mph is far better than most other methods for getting around but we do take it for granted. The more we have the more we want and the more we do not appreciate what we have. Strange logic really. A man offered a lift on a horse and cart on a long journey, at three miles an hour, would probably appreciate the lift more than the one sitting in row 36 at thirty two thousand feet. They might complain about the neighbours, the toilet queue or the food.
Looking at the European flightpaths on Flightradar reveals hundreds of aircraft criss crossing the continent, it is a wonder there are so few accidents. Having been outside Heathrow many times it is possible to see an aircraft landing and a second landing as the first turns off the runway with the lights of four more coming behind. If only the rest of the airport operated as efficiently as the landing and take offs do.
The transport of freight also is hastened by aircraft. Veg grown in Africa can be on our tables within 24 hours all to often. When I was a lad, indeed until the 1980's exotic foodstuffs like peppers were only bought by the rich and anything beyond cabbage was unheard of. How things have changed, yet we eat worse than before with a much better choice (Kippers, Beans and Waffles tonight). I may be unhappy in the morning...
Wandering back from the Post Office, I had to send chocolate to a woman for her birthday, it might have been cheaper to take it there, chocolate is heavy! Anyway the sun was shining, the temperature just right and my aches allowed to to get their and back. I did stop and chat to a man who has dug the front of his garden thus making friends with a Blackbird and a Robin. While it is clear someone has put something on the ground before, probably weedkiller, and there are few worms to be seen in his earth the birds still came looking for something, anything, that might pop its head up to be chomped. This was holding back his rate of work but he seemed happy with this.
No football tonight, this is good as I need emotional stability after watching the last Edinburgh derby of the season. The stresses I endure watching such a game cannot be equalled by anything else, though listening to a woman talk about her baby can be stressful, and after such an important game I need to rest for a few hours. I know how the players must be feeling today...