The Usual Way

I’m on a plane! (Again.)


I’ve written to you from one of these before — do you remember? That time, I was sorely in need of a little sun, a little rest, and a little make-believe. Also, arguably: a new pair of flip-flops. (I’d been coming off a yearlong hiatus of shopping for anything fun. Anything extra.)


On second thought, would you call those sandals? I think I would too. Let’s do that. $80 for sandals doesn’t sound so bad. Although, $80. That would have been almost a week’s worth of food, in NYC.

Remember when I lived there? Remember all those reality checks?


It’s been just about a month now, and I’m not sorry for having left New York behind.

I know what you’re thinking: if anything, New York probably left me behind. But I’m thinking that’s neither here nor there. Also, I think I gave you the impression that I might be turning right around and going back, at one point, so I just wanted to clear that up.

I also wanted to say that I’m not sorry for having made a beeline for home. Again. As it turns out, I’m somewhat of an advocate for The Getaway Home. I wouldn’t say I go around advertising it, but hey: Mom’s kitchen table is an awfully nice place to take a break, come up with a Plan B, and gear up for a next step.


Or, you know, possibly just enjoy living rent-free for a second, while everything comes crashing down around your head.

That said, if you can possibly avoid hitting the pause button [on Your Life, As Planned] during a divorce in progress, I’d highly recommend it. You’d have a leg up on me. 

If you said you just wanted a new beginning, I’d support that too. That’s what I wanted — that’s what I want. That’s what I’m off to find.


So far I’ve found that I can do without quite so much of the teetering.

However, for a mere $7, I can have the Alaska Airlines Signature Fruit and Cheese Platter. With Beecher’s Flagship, Tillamook Sharp Cheddar, a wedge of Brie, fresh fruit, and fancy crackers.


I can also have a softer than soft chocolate chip cookie — strategically purchased before boarding.


And I can also have a bracketed amount of time to think. This is good — this means I won’t be able to fall too far, down any one particular rabbit hole.

Here’s what I’m thinking about now: new places, new people, and new chances. Also: a new chance with a new person in a new place. I’m thinking that I might not choose to present myself the way I always have. Hi, I’m Hannah, and I’m working on this, this, and this.

I can’t help but wonder about you — about how you’re used to introducing yourself. Is this your usual way?

I wonder what you’d be like, at 34,000 feet. If you’d be able to drop off to sleep, if you tilted your seat back and closed your eyes. And if you’d wear headphones (or would you call them ear buds?) and what you’d like to listen to. And your packet of peanuts — would you eat it right away, or would you save it for later? Or would you say you’re more of a pretzel person? I wonder which you’d prefer, and I wonder if you’d able to charm the flight attendant into giving you two, of whichever one you did want.

I’d wonder all these things. I suppose I am — wondering.


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