From up here the world looks so neat and orderly. The ground is sectioned off into various shapes, each a different shade of green or brown. Lights sparkle, highlighting the city areas. Roads twist and wind as they connect one cluster of lights to another. Is there a better place to be anywhere?

But soon we will be landing and the order will give way to chaos, to busyness, to heartache. Everything will return to its normal size – including my problems. In a few minutes there will be deadlines to meet, mouths to feed, grass to cut. Everything changes in just a few thousand feet.

Yeah, yeah. I hear you, captain. We’re arriving. Thanks.

See? It’s starting already. People are starting to annoy me.

Hey, you. Yes, you. The guy on the other side of the aisle. Do you really need to use your cell phone already? Can’t we enjoy these last few moments before the door opens and we melt out into the craziness?

And are we all really in such a hurry? Squeezing into the aisle as if we can all step off at the same time? One giant blob of humanity stepping through a tiny door? I’ll wait. You go ahead.

I’m not turning my cell phone on yet, though. At least not until I get my baggage. This trip isn’t technically over until then. I’m sure there are voice mails waiting, but they don’t know I’ve landed yet, do they?

Boy, traffic is crazy. I wonder if those yellow lines actually trigger a competitive gene or something? Everybody wants to be in front. And that guy wasn’t waving hello.

To make matters worse, the voices on the radio seem to be doing nothing but arguing and shouting. Did I pick this station? Maybe there should be a station that whispers?

Finally home. I navigated the airport terminal, baggage claim, airport parking, the freeway and even a stop for gas. Didn’t I just buy gas?

I open the door, dragging my bag behind me.

“Daddy!”

“Daddy’s home!”

Hugs and giggles. Jokes that were either told wrong or just don’t make any sense. Did you just wipe a booger on me?

Man, it’s good to be home! Is there a better place to be anywhere? I don’t think so.

24 thoughts on “Perspective”
  1. Of course everyone’s in a hurry — they wouldn’t have been on an airplane otherwise, right?

    I love how the angst all melts away at the end. Rugrats do make you feel appreciated!

  2. I love it! I truly do appreciate the sarcasm. “I’ll wait. You go ahead.” That made me bust a gut. How true. I talk to myself in my mind as well. In fact if I didn’t know better I’d say you must have been inside mine!

    The human condition is wearing… But, I agree with you… There’s no place like home.

    This was excellent.

    1. Familiar boogers – Maybe I mis-titled this piece? Don’t be surprised if I steel that phrasing for another story. 🙂

    1. Thanks, Sonia! No, I didn’t take that photo. I got it from morguefile.com. I was surprised that I didn’t have one like it, though.

  3. You captured exactly how I feel when travelling up to Melbourne on the early train – I look at people who start business calls on the train, sharing them with those who surround them. The peace and the pleasure of travelling totally disrupted by their sense of urgency.

    I loved how you expressed the annoyance and created the tension of travelling only to alleviate by reaching home.

    Really nicely done Chuck!

    PS: I don’t suppose you’d consider email subscription to comments, for little ole people like me who don’t do RSS ^__^

    1. Hi Helen,

      Taking the train to Melbourne sounds like it would be fun adventure. I love flying, but I think I like travel by train even more. (Maybe because I don’t get to do it much.)

      I’ll look into the email subscription for comments. I guess there must be a plug-in for that. Thanks for suggesting it as I had not even considered it. I’ll do some digging and see what I can do. Thanks!

  4. Flying is so peaceful as you are up in the air. I am never afraid even for the bumps. I agree people could be a bit more kind as they de-plane. No place like home, with the hugs and happiness to have you there. Kids are kids aren’t they? Lovely post!

  5. Well I thoroughly enjoyed that. You captured perfectly both the wonder and frustrations of flying. I love those moments when you’re coming in to land, still high enough to see so much but close enough to start making out details.

  6. Oh I can so easily relate to this. One thing you mention, and it always confuses me too, is why everyone is stood in the aisle ten minutes before they can get off, they’re not gonna get their luggage any earlier either, are they? My wife and I are definitely in the “I’ll just sit here comfortably until the aisle is clear” variety.

    And getting home? … Aaaaaah.. bliss. 😀

  7. If you read the stroy and then that one word title – it says it all. Great ension build and its completley stiflled at the end – great peice Chuck

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