Reading At 38,000 Feet

Releasing us to be free to use our mobile devices on board planes has been a real travel blessing and stress reliever. True, most long haul flights now usually have decent entertainment systems. And I usually have a good read of British Airways’s HighLife print magazine, which generally has entertaining articles – including one each month by the BBC’s John Simpson, writing on his travels over the years.

Still, it’s great to be able to just continue to enjoy our own electronics and e-readers, too. For Friday night’s flight to Heathrow, in an “old-fashioned” moment, I’d packed this paperback I’d grabbed off my Catskills bookshelf. I’ve had it for longer than I care to remember, and it has made trips across the Atlantic before….

Excerpt from "Frontiers," on the iPad app for Kindle. Click to expand.
Excerpt from “Frontiers,” on the iPad app for Kindle. Click to expand.

….and, it being long out of print, I take care of it:

[Photo by me, 2016.]
[Photo by me, 2016.]
I need it with me now for refresher background research for the new book, which will be set in the 18th century. However, for this trip it remained in my rucksack in the overhead bin. Aside from watching one film (The Intern), my iPad was in my hand much of the rest of the non-sleeping, non-eating time, and I got through a chunk of Adele Archer’s novel, which I’m enjoying:

Screen capture of
Screen capture of

“Dee” is a superb mess of a woman; and “Milo” is a “Yank” of a guy…. with surprises. Cultural difference references thus far are also dropped in neatly and realistically. For instance, this one made me inadvertently laugh at 38,000 feet (and I say “inadvertently” because it’s not part of a scene meant to be funny):

“These are Tylenol, aren’t they?” Milo eyed the drugs suspiciously. He sunk down into a carver chair rather gravely.

“We call them Paracetamol over here, actually,” Dee replied with her usual cockiness. “It says so there on the pot.”

Tylenol as a brand does not exist here in Britain. It’s worth knowing that if you’re in a chemist’s – what Americans call a pharmacy. Years ago (uh, too many), I’d had pretty much that same learning experience there as “Milo.” 🙂


  1. I’m a bit anxious now as that superb mess of a woman is VERY loosely based on me! 😉 Glad you’re enjoying it, I’m very much liking ‘Passports’ too. Nice to have you back! 😊🇺🇸✈️🇬🇧

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    • Uh, having not seen you make any reference to it (or I’d missed it if you had), I wasn’t going to ask you about any “similarity” between you and your main character. But now that I know that, I’ll read it even more closely! 😉

      And I’m glad you’re liking my first effort. 🙂

      And, yes, it’s good to be back!

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