Confession of a Traveller : I am afraid of flying

Remembering 9/11 six years ago

I began this affair back few years ago since travel with aeroplane extensively. I do remember my first flight from Jogja to Jakarta heading to UK. Excited and fearless daredevil individual.

Things getting so complicated after I do lots of flying. Even before going to airport I have a ‘travel symptom’ –a funny feeling on my tummy indicates nervous and adrenalin high. But since I am check in online (got the boarding pass and everything in advance) actually healing these intense of feeling flaw.

Sit down on the chair I am start sweating. My mind wildly says that anything can happen in next 10-20 minutes. My hand so cold, breathing becomes an emotional trial. I grab a magazine right on front of me try to read an article or just flapping photos pages. But ended up watching the view from the window (somehow I don’t know why I’m always choose window seat).

It can be very bad when I am travel on my own (oh yes lots common now). I used to pretend everything OK. Put a brave face and act that I am a frequent flyer (which is true but in different attitude!). Soon the wheel moving, my heart pumps even harder. Then during taxing in the runway, imagination of being caught in the fire, or wheel skidding running around on my head.

I tried many things to forget I am on the plane. Put music on, audio books, little conversation with my fellow passenger or just simply put earphone to reduce the noise. None of them works. When the engine running, I grasp the arm of the chair, praying silently. Soon the wheel off from the ground, I felt the weight on my shoulder actually gone.

Keep away from TV

The National Geographic series about the aeroplane accident called “Air Crash Investigation” –ACI make even worse. I avoided the program purposely because it just makes me feeling cautious about accident. Dead people, fire, hijack, out of control machine etc… But somehow I keep watching it (or listen it) as Mark loves the program so much. The series fascinate him because he learnt about failure engines or great drama of human’s mistakes. He trusts the aeroplane, while I am not. He trusts the pilot while I am in doubt.

On the ACI program, I have seen that sometime little things can lead a disaster. A bird that hit the propeller or unrecognised signal soon become a big problem. Metal fatigue or aeroplane hijack and other several factors makes flying not a comfortable experience anymore.

I wonder if my reluctant not to see bad things or face the fact that accident can happen mere on the deep on my heart. People always try to not being hurt, or not being sad. My eyes cannot see blood, or crumpled bodies or pieces of human’s organ show in TV. We always want pretty things, beautiful views and breathtaking pictures.

I watch through television about lots of airline accidents. In the last two weeks there are two major accidents: Air China in Japan and emergency landing of a Scandinavian’s plane. I cannot stop myself to consume news about the accident since those two were on mainstream television. All I can do just keep away from the news; neglect my curiosity about why that accident happen.

Stopping the information insert into my brain actually put me off from the fear temporarily. All I can do is prevent myself from being afraid of something that not been proven to be happen. But again, I questioned myself: will it happen?

Note : wish me luck for tomorrow's flight