When you are in an aeroplane flying above the clouds and switch on a movie for relaxation, and the movie starts with the camera moving through the clouds and a voice saying, "One small fact: you are going to die...when the time comes, don't panic," it is hardly a relaxing experience. I am not making this up, it really happened to me on the Emirates flight from Washington DC to Dubai on Saturday. The movie The Book Thief starts that way.
The fact that the plane was a Boeing 777, the same model as the Malaysian Airways plane that vanished a week ago was hardly reassuring.
Nevertheless, I relaxed like I had never done on a plane before. I watched 12 Years A Slave, Brave, The Book Thief and Wolverine in a row, listened to some music, photographed ice crystals outside the window, and even managed some sleep during my thirteen hour journey from DC to Dubai. I was going home after two years and two months, and the thought of seeing familiar faces and experiencing familiar sights and sounds made me happy. The journey from Dubai to Kolkata was relaxing too, but I only slept during this one.
That was exactly three weeks ago. I have been relaxing at home ever since, steadily growing in girth. I came with a two-week leave to get my visa, but that has been delayed for some administrative processing, and now I have no idea when I will be able to return. The only problem is, I am not enjoying this forced relaxation much since I am losing my hard earned leave days, and also losing valuable time from my research.