On Tuesday I had reason to wait around in an airport for over an hour. I managed to secure a seat in front of a TV and watched in shock as the latest natural disaster unfolded on the screen. After an hour of riveting, yet horrifying viewing I checked my watch and was amazed to see that really only ten minutes had passed. Three hours later, and I had only used up 30 minutes of my wait time. Something very strange was going on.
I pulled myself away from the vision of yet more evidence that maybe the 2012 fanatics were not all card carrying nutbags, and decided to walk the concourse. After watching three planes take off I nervously looked at my watch, sure I had wasted too much time and boarding was probably well underway at my now distant gate.
Only three more minutes had passed.
Then it struck me; time in the airport moves at a different pace. If you are early, it feels like wading through honey in a shaggy, full-length coat, if you are running late for your flight, it is like walking on sloping glass in shoes made of butter.
There must be a way to harness this.
I have friends who a) actually make some money out of writing, so b) have real deadlines for delivering it (not just self-made Excel spreadsheets with cells that change colour if you are behind). I think these friends need to book themselves on a flight somewhere and turn up for the plane a week early. Using my recent experience I estimate that it should give them about a year’s worth of writing time.
In the meantime, after nearly a day of waiting, my hour was up and I caught my flight home, ever mindful of all the people who would not be getting home that night, and how awfully fast and slow their minutes must be. I guess the message in this is no matter what speed your minutes are passing, they are indeed passing, so you need to make the most of every single one.