I sit in the Los Angeles International Airport awaiting for the crisp Boeing 747 to spring me across the Pacific on a brief 14 hour flight to the forbidden city of Taipei. I am inundated by a flood of foreign languages and unique, varying cultures, while my cohort entertains themselves with three activities. Lizzy adjusts her computer for the upcoming venture, Maddi and Garrett participate in a solitaire-like card competition, and Evan wanders around in search of a charging station. I’m left to my thoughts in this bolstering airport; the static background noise becomes a still quiet.
The day has passed slowly. A combination of the shock from not realizing how soon I shall cross into this new land and the longing ache caused from already missing my family and friends back at home have made each second long and surreal. My elevated attire, which my Dad recommended for me for the upcoming ice aboard the international plane weighs heavily on me in the populous of the airport terminal. So it goes.
The excitement of the trip grows exponentially. I still can’t fully grasp that soon I will be further from home than the combined total of all of my previous trips (minus San Francisco which, when totaled, exceeds the distance between the north shore and Qingdao). I feel like I’m living some sort of livid dream…whether this is from sleep deprivation, jet lag, genuine surrealism, or a combination of the three, I cannot tell for sure. In less than three hours I will begin the longest flight of my life. I’m praying that I may arrive in Taibei (台北) without any extreme jet lag problems so that my journey into the Middle Kingdom can officially begin.
Fourteen hours of flying…I’m actually extremely excited to undertake this…haha. This is going to be super fun!