The airport was crowded, messy, and noisy. The flight attendant announced that we had to give up our carry-on luggage because the flight was too full. So much for packing light. When I got on the plane, I checked twice to make sure I got the seat assignment right –the middle seat in a non-reclining row. A bulky man got up to let me in and I settled in as best as I could between him and another bigger man. I am not a large person. Many would consider me small. I counted my breaths and kept telling myself, “I can do this. It’s not a problem.”
When I transferred flights in Dallas, four gate changes at different terminals resulted in several hops onto the train trams. I got to the right gate in time to board but missed lunch. That’s okay, I thought. I once again had a non-reclining seat, the latrine right behind me. Every time the toilet door opened; I got a whiff of something foul. Missing lunch was probably a good thing.
When I arrived at my destination, I had to wait a rather extended time at baggage claim for my carry-on. I was almost there; again, trying to be as optimistic as I could be. I had been up since 2:30 am for the hour and a half drive to the nearest international airport. After I got my carry-on, I had an even longer wait for a rental car. That’s okay, I thought once more.
My time back east was fast and furious (at least another blog’s worth), and I once again had to repeat the process to come home, my patience wearing thin.
I had a window seat on my last plane ride. Once we took flight, I looked out the tiny window and watched as the sun dipped toward the horizon lighting up the clouds with tinges of amber, crimson, and lavender. It was a beautiful sight, the sky above a perfect blue.
Whether I had forgotten how to fly due to the Pandemic or how to engage in the hustle and bustle of a family gathering or how to work through the kinks and strains of travel, I found such solace in looking at that sky as it changed from royal to navy blue, a few stars beginning to flicker in the distance. The comfort of something as basic as the sky reminding me once again that for those things that truly matter, all is well, and for everything else… it’s just weather.
How did you find solace this week?
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