(OK, so most of these photos were actually taken in Key Largo and Naples – you don’t get to see the sun sink into the sea from Miami itself – but you get the message, I’m sure…)
I really thought I was almost over my fear of flying. Well, not OVER it exactly: I still shake in terror any time we hit turbulence, and I can’t fall asleep on an airplane for more than a few seconds, because there’s a
small fairly large part of my brain which is convinced the only thing keeping us up there is sheer willpower. MY willpower, to be exact. But over the past few years, I’ve definitely been handling it a little better. On the way out here, for instance, I didn’t even need to cling to Terry’s hand on take-off or anything. I just sat there like a normal person, flicking through the in-flight magazine and wondering if the child in the seat behind me was going to kick my seat ALL the way to America, or just PART of the way. (Answer: ALL. THE. FREAKING. WAY.) I’d like to think this new “No Drama Amber” thing (Ha! AS IF.) is because I’m getting all grown-up or something, but actually I reckon it’s simply because the UK is so gloomy and depressing most of the time that flying feels a lot like escaping to me now, and there’s not a lot I wouldn’t do for the chance to escape, for a little while at least.
So I thought I was getting better, and although I’ve spent the last few days weighed down with the sadness of leaving, I hadn’t actually been fearing for my life, you know? And then a plane hit the runway in San Francisco, and all of sudden it’s all I can think of. My family did their best to hide to the images from me, and it worked for a day, maybe more, (Well, I’m on vacation, who needs the news?) but then, of course, I saw them, and a dark cloud descended. I don’t want anyone to think I’m trying to make this tragedy all about ME, because obviously it isn’t, and my heart goes out to the poor people on that plane: but wow, I think I might have over-estimated how “OK” I was with flying. And now I’m back to being absolutely TERRIFIED.
It’ll be fine. I’m sure it will. And if it isn’t, well, at least I managed to supply those of you who requested it a photo of Terry in those mint green chinos I bought him for his birthday. ” I would’ve hated to have left you all with that particular suspense hanging over you. You may never find out what became of Nigel, the International Man of Mystery Next Door, but by God, you have seen those damn chinos. Well, sort of. I mean, you can’t really see the colour here, obviously, but you can trust me on this: they are minty. “If there’s one thing I want to do before going to my certain death,” I said last night, “It’s to show my readers a photo of Terry in a pair of mint green chinos, doing a comedic ‘Karate Kid’ pose on a beach!” And now that I have, my work here is done. I always thought I’d be remembered for stripes or polka dots, but nope, it’s mint green chinos that shall be my lasting legacy, apparently. Funny how things work out, isn’t it?
Anyway. By the time you read this, I’ll (hopefully) be high above the Atlantic, travelling at astonishing speed inside a scary tin can with wings. Wish me luck…