Frontier. Not the final. The airline. The final frontier? Yes, that’s already taken. Not that I wouldn’t put it past myself to heist it in a creative way.
But not today.
Today, Frontier Airlines was kind. The counter agent advised me that I could save $25 if I returned to the kiosk and printed my bag tag myself. Otherwise, she’d have to charge me. I was surprised. Based on how she reacted to my puzzled look, I guessed it wasn’t the first one she’d seen today, even though it was 5:30.
In the morning.
So I thanked her, printed my ticket and checked my bag, and thought about all the things I could do with that $25. That didn’t take long, and this time I wasn’t surprised.
Today, Frontier was another type of kind, too. Kind of late. I didn’t want to suppose they’d deduced I was on vacation; that I was on my way to a writer’s conference; and that sometimes the key to great writing is forced isolation. In today’s digital environment of big data, AI, and machine learning, all of that was within the realm of possibility.
But that would be scary. Too scary for a Monday morning, anyway.
What they did and didn’t know about me is beside the point. The point is they were kind enough to provide just that. Forced isolation. According to the app that provided me with my flight update, it was to be an estimated 114 minutes. Not even 100 minutes or a rounded two hours. 114 minutes.
With all that computing power, you’d think they could figure out what the word “estimate” means.
Anyway. 114 minutes of forced isolation with 100s of my fellow travelers, all wanting to be someplace they’re not. Well, most of them.
It gave me the time to think about frontiers from my perspective. It’s about transitioning from my current full-time job to my next one. But James, aren’t you already a writer? OK. You got me there. The key word there is full-time.
I know. That’s two keywords. Here are two more: keep reading.
So, yeah. I’m kind of delayed on my way to where I want to be. Upset? Hardly. I leave that to the baby two rows over who’s insisting at the top of her lung capacity that the airport is not the kind of place a baby should be first thing on a Monday morning.
For writers, our perspective is a little bit different.