Thursday, September 9, 2010

Glamorous Travel

Travel is only glamorous in retrospect.
Paul Theroux

After a particularly difficult plane trip to Michigan the other day I find myself somewhat nostalgic for the days when travel was a more uncommon process. Air travel in particular has suffered the loss of glamor. There used to be a sense of excitement and possibility when you were to travel by air. Now it's about appealing as a root canal as to the dentist. Even my favorite airline Continental has fallen to the nickel and dime mentality. Every piece of the trip is colored by feeling as if you are being placed in cattle steerage and paying them for the honor. Let's face it September 11, 2001 really was also the death of glamor travel for the airlines. You have to fight to retain any sense of possibility of glamor in your travel. In that spirit, I like to dress up a bit for travel. And though others may doubt it, it is possible to be comfortable yet glamorous in your wardrobe choices when traveling. I've acquired the habit of packing an alfresco meal with a cloth napkin and getting a bottle of mineral water or something a little different when I can at the airport. It helps me feel as even though I may be in coach (I would love to travel first class, but have to live life on a social worker salary), I am treating myself first class. Usually my seat mates are envious also. When possible I try to encourage them to revolt against what I call the "Moo Airlines Mentality". A large cashmire scarf obtained from E-Bay also is part of my arsenal of keeping warm yet glamorous.

More and more I'm thinking about traveling by train and have found this website about train travel:


Train travel may be in many ways one of the last bastions of glamor travel. Maybe it's time to try doing more of it.

Sheila E, "The Glamorous Life":


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