11 November 2009

Not quite like de Botton.....

Just back from overseas, visiting family in London with a side trip with them to Istanbul. All very enjoyable notwithstanding the customary hazards of modern international air travel, notably airport chaos/ inefficiency and the brusqueness of (most) UK border protection officials.

Earlier this year Alain de Botton spent a week
in the employ of the British Airports Authority as a writer in residence at Heathrow Terminal Five. He's just published his diary, which is a characteristically fluent distillation of his week, which is one a long way removed from my and, I expect, most other airport users' experiences. That said it's worth reading, if only for the very different perspective he brought to his task. He must have been almost the only person with time to reflect about the terminal: everyone else was of necessity focused on a particular task: travelling (departing or arriving), security, selling (a big, big part of modern airport life) or maintenance.

I may have more to say about this topic later....

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