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San Clemente, CA, United States

Friday, June 24, 2016

Can Johnny still Read?

I spent the past 3 days in my old stomping grounds; Tucson, Arizona.  Well, that isn't exactly correct. I spent a good portion of those three days at the airport.

The first flight was the train wreck.  I was booked on a 1:00 PM flight out of San Diego, CA on Southwest Airlines.  Leaving from San Clemente, I hit the freeway at 10:00 AM.  Parking, check-in, security went smoothly and quickly and I was sitting at the gate by noon.   I checked the master board and was happy to see the plane was scheduled to be "On Time".

At 12:40, the board changed and indicated our flight was delayed and scheduled for 1:50.  So what, I got an hour.

At 1:50 we were informed that the plane was at the gate, the flight attendants were on-board, but there was no pilot.  Seems having a pilot is a good thing when flying.  We were asked to be patient and that we would leave as soon as the pilot arrived.

He never really arrived.   !:50, 3:50, 6:00.... All posted departure times that came and went with me still sitting in the airport reading a Jack Reacher novel.

The other passengers, to their great credit, mostly handled the situation with composure.  What can you do anyway?  Yell at someone who didn't do anything wrong?  We all commiserated quietly and tried to stay patient.

At 7:00 PM,  we were told our pilot had just landed and was close.  We were also then all given a flight voucher for a free $200.00.  Pretty reasonable I'd say.

At 7:40 we boarded and were in the air 10 minutes later.

So what, I got delayed.

What stuck with me is what I watched.  Both during the 7 hours in San Diego, and another hour in Tucson, I observed the end of reading.

Back in the day, (I know how much we all hate that expression, but it fits) everyone read at the airport.  Paperback books, the newspaper, magazines, text books and coloring books.

No one is reading now.  NO ONE.  Ok,  1.  Me.  EVERYONE is on there device.  Computer, tablet and phone.  I'm not really judging.  I'm observing.  I watched people spend 7 hours on their devices.  It was weird.

No one was reading.   Maybe reading is happening online?  I don't think it is.  I think we are texting, (without grammar), gaming, and watching videos.

Now if I WERE to judge, I'd lament the fact that we don't read.

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