No one knows what the body can do. -Spinoza
Saturday, January 2, 2010
After months of waiting, finally I travel via planes equipped with wi-fi. Here I am again crossing southern portions of the United States operating online at 30,000 ft.
Friends celebrated their romantic commitment to each other in Alabama this last week. So, in an act of love and solidarity, a number of us flew in from far off locales to support them. We traveled from Alaska-via-Arizona (me), New Brunswick (Enoch), Ontario (Paul), Quebec (Noah and Marianne), Indiana (Natalia), New York (Gabe) and all over the south. The event for Shiloh and Aaron was an eat-and-mingle, then get-up-and-speak-of-the-couple style party. After their friends and family honored them, Shiloh and Aaron explained their reasons for choosing not to marry, or offer a ceremony. They felt they'd made their commitment to each other long before, and so did not need to inaugurate anything new in their relationship, but they wanted to come together with loved ones to celebrate the love of which we all were a part--theirs. A kind of queer politic of love and solidarity, as I said a moment ago, shared by all of us there even when the couple was an otherwise heterosexual pair with the legal opportunity to wed.
The last month has held a wealth of traveling for me. The ten-year old and I returned to Alaska to have 12 days with our extended family, all of whom reside there, besides the two of us. Then on December 22 we flew back to Arizona to share a birthday celebration with a friend in Prescott on the 23rd, dinner with other friends in Flagstaff on the 24th, Christmas with each other and still other friends, and then the day after with still more in Tucson on the 26th. The ten year old then stayed with close friends, while I flew East to Alabama. On the 30th Paul and I rented a car and drove on to Memphis. But, first, we headed half an hour into Arkansas, through West-Memphis, before turning around to return back to Downtown Memphis. As such, he and I drove through four states in one afternoon (the American south is remarkably small in terms of the size of political-geographical spaces as represented by states)--Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas--and further, I visited all four "A" states within 8 days--Alaska, Arizona, Alabama, Arkansas.
The travel has also added two new airports to my list of those I've flown into and/or out of (I'll fly into El Paso this afternoon, and I flew into Huntsville earlier in the trip), and two more states that I've now been in too--Alabama, Mississippi.
62. El Paso
Tonight I arrive again in Phoenix, and metaphorically cry my way north to the Colorado Plateau as a result of all the moving around. Later this week one of my best friends, Christine, visits Flagstaff, for which I am so happy and grateful.