Making Connections Wherever I Am

I officially have one of the worse flight schedules possible, but it still doesn’t compare to those who first circumnavigated the globe. I’ve got for flights this time around – DC – Amsterdam – Nairobi – Bujumbura – Kigali and then drive six hours to Bukavu, DRC tomorrow. All in all about 48 hours, but still a record when you think of the real distance.

As I take another trip around the globe, I’m continually intrigued by the phenomenon of flight. Just a century ago flying was looked as something as out of this world as connecting to you from Nairobi would have been a few decades back. Our norms have also changed socially during travel.

One of the things that I was chatting with my husband about recently is that people don’t talk on planes these days. I can’t say that I’m not guilty of this either. I’ve spent numerous trips around the globe not talking to anyone.

It is a bit of a bizarre phenomenon when you think of it. Most people are doing something interesting that is taking then from here to there. We all have a story, and from all edges of the earth. Why don’t we speak up and share a bit, even if it is just small talk?

This time around I ended up having several good conversations. One in line boarding the flight to Nairobi, and the other on the flight itself. The first was sparked by the woman and I having the same bag, and noting its popularity. The second was even more interesting. The woman actually broke all social norms and actually started talking to me during meal service when I had my headphones in. The conversation was much more interesting than the cartoon they had on. She was coming from Indianapolis to pick up her three year old daughter who had been in Kenya since Christmas and go to her brother’s wedding, while being fully pregnant as well.

Having had many a flight with no contact at all, it was refreshing to share a bit and have some interaction. My goal on this trip is to be more social as I travel. Traveling can often bring out the introvert in me, as I spend hours in deep thought all up in my head. It is often a time of reflection, but it is also helpful to connect with others around you. You never know who you might meet.

Safe travels,


Leave a Comment