Every airport has a particular smell. Hong Kong International Airport’s a dried fish/market stall smell while Heathrow is all diesel dust and desperation. Landing in Adelaide Airport smells like normality to me, sunlit acres stretching to a thin horizon out the windows, an abundance of space and light, a welcome respite from the winter I had just left behind in the UK.
It’s only an hour, transiting at the airport towards this trip’s final destination in Melbourne, but it’s an intense flavour burst of the familiar. I fall back into the speech patterns I know.
–Hey, how you going? Boarding pass, please.
–Good, thanks, how’re you?
–Good, thanks. Right, that looks good. Here you go. Have a nice flight.
The plane tilts left after the thrust of ascent and the land drops away, leaving me with just a teasing glimpse of a blue stretch of water and a golden line of sand, wavering out of sight.
Ivy Alvarez, Cardiff, Wales, written for BIG, Jan 2011
A small black borrowed journal flies to me holding the most beautiful bird in its pages. The Viollisa Bird. From far away a writer sends me words in airport transit. Tilt. The writer and the young artist have never met, except in this sky. There is a new flock of birds in the BIG email. It is amazing how each bird finds its BIG mate. If you flew us a bird, rest assured it will fly here soon when a match is made. If you want to join the flock, send us your bird/words by Feb 14th! Lilly and her very own Viollisa bird will soon tilt back here from the Bay of Fires with bird drafts and beginnings sketched on dry leaves and under skin. She is BIG time missed.