Radio Diaries: Hawaii

Feb 17, 2017

“Honolulu, here I come,” the young man says as our little group of passengers walks through the chilly jet way.  It is an hour before dawn in Traverse City, dark and windy and bitter cold.

Sitting in the plane to Minneapolis, we wait 45 minutes to get “de-iced” by the fellow in the elevated bucket who sends great sprays of white liquid thumping against the wings and windows.

Meanwhile, six rows behind me, the young man in the bright shirt announces, “It’s 82 degrees in Honolulu right now.”

His voice is loud and the plane is small.  Maybe I’m jealous, maybe I’m nervous, but I wish he’d shut up about Hawaii.  Finally the engines start whining, then roaring—but as soon as we’re airborne, I hear his voice again, “… lying on the beach and soaking up the sun.”

Meanwhile, I’m just going to Minneapolis where it’s even colder than Traverse City.  For five whole days, I’m going to need to be de-iced.  I open my book but I’m too annoyed to read.  Then I hear the young man say, “I’ve been in Afghanistan for 17 months.”

The pilot announces our arrival in Minneapolis in 15 minutes.  “I hope everybody makes their connections,” he says.  Suddenly, I hope so, too.