"Well, we can't all travel by bubble!"It's said in a rather arch manner in the musical, and it always gets laughs. But it's set me to wondering: what would it be like to take a journey inside a soap bubble?--Elphaba the Wicked Witch of the West,
to Glinda the Good, Wicked
First, of course, there'd be the issue of getting into the bubble successfully. You might, say, stand on the ledge of a grand, solid bubble ring, its surface shimmering with soapy liquid, and be "blown in" by a burst of air which simultaneously forms the bubble around you.
You'd be enclosed in a translucent rainbow orb, its colors constantly shifting and sliding around you like a dot of oil on rainy pavement, and perhaps for the first while you'd be too busy just enjoying the beauty of it, or giggling at the oddness of your distorted upside-down reflection. But eventually you'd settle down a bit and have a look around outside. There'd be plenty to see and hear -- bubbles would no doubt let in plenty of light from above and sound from all directions, and they'd be virtually noiseless travel (no engines or moving parts to make a racket).
Bubble travel, like a visit to a used bookstore, would have to be recognized as an unhurried pursuit. Bubbles don't move as much as they meander; the wind takes a bubble wherever it will, and the bubble offers no resistance. But I'm convinced that the more willing you are to surrender to its quirky wanderings, the more you'll enjoy the journey -- and the more likely you are to arrive, not just at the place you wanted to go, but the place where you truly need to be.
You'd know your journey was nearing an end as the fragile skin of the bubble began to evaporate, slowly losing its place in the material world as it became progressively less shimmery, more ephemeral, then scarcely visible. And then, just as you might step gracefully from the moving stair of an escalator to the stationary floor below, you would alight effortlessly at your destination with a scarcely-audible *pop*.
The Munchkin welcoming committee option would, no doubt, cost extra.