Maybe it was an illusion, a trick of the airplane’s thick window, but the long, jet-black horizon looked slightly curved. Even through the tiny oval, it was massive, the land, and it pushed up against a fire-orange strip which turned to yellow and faded darkly upward into cobalt blue with stars in it, giving even more of an outer-space feeling, a curved-earth vastness as the plane dipped southward, the orange strip red now, on our left; I closed the window and tried to sleep just a little more.
The heat in Paris had risen steadily before we left, but the day of our flight, it broke with a crackling, dark-gray thunderstorm over the city, so that the air was cool as we boarded our Emirates Air flight to Islamabad, with a 30-hour layover in Dubai.
A scorching heatwave was pounding all of Asia, with temperatures soaring over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, projected for 125 when we land in Pakistan! But, reported the BBC, the heat was expected to break next week, maybe, if the monsoon winds arrived early.