It’s nine PM in Moscow. We are in the lounge at the grey airport, sipping white wine with a hint of funky flavor, and waiting for the flight.
Probably about 14 hours had passed since I woke up at home that day, and it already seemed like ages ago. Some last arrangments – picking up the paycheck from the job I’ve just left, coffee and breakfast to-go, last-minute packagings. Silent breakfast, the house feels empty. A quick shower and we’re out.
My family took us to the airport. The lines are not too long, the backpacks are sent straight to Bangkok and everything goes smoothly. My dad found a tiny doll that somebody dropped on the marble floor, a blonde plastic woman waving goodbye, and it’s still there at the bottom of my bag for luck.
Goodbyes, hugs and Duty-Free. Now we are by ourselves, my boyfriend Roni and I. I took small sips from my coffee and looked around – a young couple sat next to us and seemed like they were used to flying, a young guy with a nose ring was speaking in the phone, people with suits and dresses. Are they excited as I am?
Almost ten years had passed since the last time I’ve been on a plane, so I was a bit nervous when we boarded. We held hands during the departure, as I imagined in the last months. Everything stayed down there, a white city and the blue sea. My heart soared and I couldn’t take my eyes off the cloud-city outside.
By sunset, the enormous city of Moscow was spread beneath us, beautiful and sparking, the sun reflects on every window and washing everything with a red light.
The Russian airport was grey and monstrous. It was unclear what the time was, unclear that we were not home anymore. People around seemed cold and solemn. Animal’s tounges and pickled fish were presented at the front of a restaurant, with a flamboyant souvenirs shop next to it.
We had about an hour and a half until the next flight so we got a small bottle of wine, unsure of how to pay and which language to speak. The feeling of strangeness and loneliness began to seep in.
It was dark out as we boarded the plane to Bangkok, and will be morning when we’ll reach our destination.