Some people like to fly, some would rather take the road. Some stand in the middle, eager to move through air but also happy to witness landscapes from the ground floor. Personally, I do a fair share of both, as quite often – which means every single time – the airports I make use of are not in my immediate proximity. This means that most of the time, my travels require both methods of transportation to reach my desired destination.
I like bus journeys. Flying is cool and I absolutely love it, but there’s something about being level on level with nature that just does it for me. I like staring out the windows and getting lost in my own mind, taking in the scenery as I reflect on anything going on in my life.
Bus journeys are usually longer than flights, even if the actual distance is way smaller. They’re way more relaxing – you sit down, tuck your things away and just nestle in your seat in search for the perfect position. When you board a flight, by the time the lights have gone off, your ears have acquired functionality once again and you are finally allowed to wear the damned earphones and free your coveted seat desk, you’re already almost there and sadly ready to do it all over again for the landing. Unless it is an intercontinental flight, this routine happens more quickly than you can process it and leaves you tired, deaf and possibly gives you a sore throat. Add to that the fact that, unless the sky is clear, the most you see are clouds, and you can see why bus journeys have their own perks.
I was recently on a three hour bus journey from Glasgow to Aberdeen, retreating home after a long day of filming in the city. I had a lot on my mind and, as it happens in life, had barely had the chance to sit down and reflect. Time always seems to escape from our hands, doesn’t it? No matter how hard we try to hold onto it. The more you squeeze it, the smaller it gets, and the cycle continues until you pause and close your eyes for a second.
As it happens, this bus journey was my time to do just that. Surrounded by the Scottish landscapes, I allowed my mind to finally rest and wander to those far away thoughts which I had kept at bay until then. Three hours flew by as I stared into nothingness and enjoyed the solitude of my mind. I was at a strange peace with myself, as my mind and body were moving at the same pace, through air and space.
That’s the magic about bus journeys: they take you to your destination, they push you towards new lands and they give you the comfort of silence for those few hours. You enter one reality and get out in another, as the ride kindly allows you to sit back and make peace with yourself before throwing you out in a different land.
I am not dissing flight journeys, on the contrary I think there’s upsides in both. There’s something unique about being up in the sky, away from everything and anything, as if you were able to escape to another universe for some time. I just find more peace in driving on the concrete road, immersing myself into the nature of a country and being surrounded by it, in a way that a plane unfortunately cannot do.
If you’re embarking on any of these soon, I highly suggest you take these moments for yourself, making the best of the experience by immersing into the depth of your mind. Who knows what you might find?