Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Night Flight to Venus


There's something unique to me about the ambiance of a darkened airline cabin, being in a plane full of sleeping people hurtling through the night sky at hundreds of miles an hour and thousands of feet high. It's at once so normal and yet, if you think about it for more than a second, so extraordinary. 

As I stood at the back, the glow from all the seat screens formed a forest of electronic luminescence. This shot is pushing the very limits of the little 0.7 mp iTouch camera and it doesn't really reflect accurately the ambiance of the real scene. It all felt terribly futuristic, but not exactly soothing. For some reason the song Night Flight to Venus popped into my head. Would spaceflight one day be treated as so ordinary?

The last time I flew, the only lights in a darkened cabin were the small reading lights of the insomniacs. Small pools of light separating the conscious from those away in the land of Nod. That felt right. As it should be. But today, even though the people in this cabin were mostly asleep, the screens remained on. It's as if the modern world doesn't allow for rest. We are literally bathed in information, available at all times, even when we are asleep. Or trying to sleep. 

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