I really enjoyed watching ‘Dumbo’ and ‘Aladdin’ on the plane | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 11: A view of the atmosphere during the World Premiere of Disney's "Dumbo" at the El Capitan Theatre on March 11, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Disney/AFP

I arrived in Seattle two Sundays ago, a little before noon. The flight was uneventful except for a few rough spots, but not bad enough for me to panic and grab a stranger’s hand.

Actually, that would not have been an easy thing to do, as each seat is in a cubicle that is quite independent and at a distance from the next passenger. It is a comfortable plane and I enjoyed my little space. Service on board ANA, by the way, is wonderful. Impeccable.

I guess flights to Japan and the United States are shorter at this time of year. The usual four hours to Japan was way shorter and instead of the normal 10 to the West Coast, it was eight and a half.

I was delighted. Any minute less that I spend up in the air is good news.

I had time for a short snooze, or what felt like one, and two movies, “Aladdin” and “Dumbo.” I loved both. I know these are children’s movies but I insist that everyone in the world, at whatever age, should see them both. There is much to learn. It is sad and humbling to realize how our view of right and wrong has been incredibly warped.

I am still trying to figure out why I thoroughly enjoyed both movies. The critics have not been too kind to “Dumbo.” And although “Aladdin” received better reviews, these were not full of superlatives either. What was it then that delighted, even moved me, I wondered?

Maybe it was the absence of dirty language? Or perhaps it was tasting once again a return to innocence, and seeing the contrast between the jaded, unfeeling world of today and that “whole new world” with its “new fantastic point of view” that touched my heart.

But I was carried away in that magic carpet ride and fell in love with the genie.

“Aladdin” is beautifully done. The music is memorable. And Dumbo, with his oversized ears and sad blue, eyes made me cry. Also, the clumsy Mrs. Dumbo broke my heart.

The rest of the flight I opted for classical music. I listened to Chopin. It brought back memories of my growing up years.

I look forward to more of the same on my way home in December. And if they haven’t changed the movie line-up, I won’t mind tuning in to “Aladdin” and “Dumbo” again.

Typical Seattle

Landing in Seattle was bumpy. We traversed voluminous rain clouds and could see nothing but gray sky from my window. But a few shudders and shakes later we finally saw the Seattle skyline below us. Even the stewardess looked relieved. And my heart raced knowing my family was down there waiting for me.

At the airport it was 16 degrees Celsius and drizzling. Cool enough but without shivering. I heard someone mutter, “Typical Seattle.” I found it stimulating. And the rain? It felt like I never left home.

The lady who pushed my wheelchair wore a burqa. She was pleasant enough but not a very good driver. We hit every obstacle in our way.

My daughter was there to meet me. Her son drove us to my granddaughter’s home in Bellevue.

It is peaceful here. I sleep in my 7-year-old great granddaughter’s bedroom, surrounded by her dolls, toy castles, miniature tea sets, a well-equipped play kitchen and organdy curtains with ribbons.

I love Bella’s bed. I sleep better here than anywhere else. Do her little girl dreams and fairy dust maybe linger in this room and keep me company at night? I believe they do.

Two days after I arrived, my BFF got in from Phoenix for a short visit. Our friendship started in Hawaii 51 years ago. Friends like Pam are hard to find. Pretty near impossible. She’s more than family.

We took her to Top Gun. What a strange name for a Chinese restaurant. She loves manapua (that’s what they call char siu bao in Hawaii.)

The next day we went to Bellevue Mall. I didn’t do any shopping. I was jetlagged and had no energy.

Instead, we chose a comfy little corner just a few steps away from Beechers, where they serve the best mac and cheese this side of the moon. Of course, we ate.

And we sat there while the kids hit the stores.

We talked about our life in Honolulu, remembered going to Duke Kahanamoku’s at the International Market Place, watching shows and living at the Outrigger on Waikiki where she worked in accounting, and the many nights we just stayed home watching Johnny Carson, eating toasted English muffins slathered with peanut butter or folding laundry.

Why are those old times so hard to forget?

We later went to a trendy food court under the W Hotel and had a brawler burger and French fries for dinner. Welcome to America.


I have been away only two weeks and here I am eager for news from home. I don’t know why when it never fails to upset me. And it is of no comfort that the news over here isn’t the best, either.

Friday, I caught one of our senate hearings online. What a waste of time and taxpayer money!

It is painful to watch grown men and women act like buffoons, pointing fingers and mouthing ungrammatical inanities just to get their moment of fame on television.

It is truly a comedy of errors. A joke. But it hurts too much to laugh.