I’m back to making a large trip, though due to unfortunate timing and work schedules, this time without my beloved wife. One of my best friends had planned his wedding for just about the busiest time of the year for my wife, and sadly he won’t have his life revolve around ours. So it means that I’m writing this blog now sitting alone at the terminal at O’Hare.

regular facial expression without the wife

And after traveling so long with someone, it’s such an empty and lonely feeling traveling alone. Don’t get me wrong, traveling before I had got married was also lonely, and all these little feel-good books claiming that it isn’t are filled with lies.

There are different kinds of lonelinesses though, some can be positive, leading you along weird and exciting paths, and of course, some can be negative. Some can be the feeling of when you don’t have half of yourself present, that it’s just a ghost-limb operation of half of your body and soul and even when traveling is one of the more exciting prospects in your life, you want to be back at home and in bed with your loved one. Obviously, I’m not speaking about you, but rather about me.

waiting at the terminal

So finally, my readers are again subjected to one of my travels without my wife, not that I’m so prone to talk about personal things, but still.

Layovers are probably the most painful thing for me about air travel. You have to spend hours and hours stuck at a place with no purpose but idleness, a panopticon you're forced into, unable at all to leave without endless more hassle. Surrender comes. As it’s a prison, the best habits then are from prisoners.

Chicago O’Hare offers 30 minutes of free wifi per device. With my phone and tablet, that gave me an hour to kill on Facebook, reading the news, and listless swiping on social media. When that died, my next mission was to walk the complete length of the concourse, but very slowly. I mean at such a speed that it’s deliberate. I’ve read that prisoners in the gulag and elsewhere become masters of this sort of walking, since that was the only real entertainment they were given for years at a time. The gulag stroll.