Alain de Botton Imagines a World Without Airplanes

Travel Blog  •  Michael Yessis  •  05.10.10 | 11:47 AM ET

The man who recently spent a week at Heathrow outlines what the world might look like without “the unremitting progress of inbound aluminium tubes.” De Botton even imagines what would happen to Heathrow:

At Heathrow, now turned into a museum, one would be able to walk unhurriedly across the two main runways and even give in to the temptation to sit cross-legged on their centrelines, a gesture with some of the same sublime thrill as touching a disconnected high-voltage electricity cable, running one’s fingers along the teeth of an anaesthetised shark or having a wash in a fallen dictator’s marble bathroom.

(via Gadling)



1 Comment for Alain de Botton Imagines a World Without Airplanes

Carol Shetler 05.11.10 | 10:41 PM ET

I thank M. de Botton for his wonderfully imagined article. However, he neglected to mention one thing that two of my friends in the UK homed in on immediately once I asked them how they were faring during the ash cloud crisis. (One lives just northwest of London, the other in Essex, southeast of the city.) Both of them told me that the night skies had not been as clear in 30 years as they were during that week. So, another benefit of no airplanes could be that Londoners and other inhabitants of airplane-choked cities could teach their children about the stars, planets, comets and other fascinating phenomena of the night sky once more.

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