It is amazing how certain moments in our lives can cause great lucidity and help us understand and appreciate how flexible we can be. Flexible, but in control.
Flying home from London didn't hold quite the charm that flying to
London did. My flight was delayed, it was horrible getting through Heathrow, of course, my gate was the furthest one possible. Security was incredibly tight, and people were grumpy. Not me, of course,
but certainly, everyone else. ;-)
As I looked around the terminal preparing to board, a scary realization bestowed itself upon me. There were about ten
babies, under six months old, in their mum's arms getting ready to board, as well. A thought of dread struck me briefly but I shrugged it off, as I had flown with other babies on board before with no issues. So why the dread? When I was boarding, I saw that one young family was going to be seated directly in front of me. Their cherub of a baby seemed quite content strapped to her daddy's front. That content melted away as soon as we prepared for takeoff and then, this lovely
little cherub, proceeded to cry for the next 12 hours, literally, I'm not kidding, seriously.
In addition to the soundtrack, I was also delighted to find that my seat was quickly turned into a motion ride as the passenger behind me proceeded to kick and
bump my seat every two to three minutes. I felt like I was riding atop the Beverly Hillbillies truck: crying babies and no shock absorbers. I had just spent nine days in a completely unfamiliar country, the plumbing wasn't the best, and the subway line by my hotel shut down completely my last three days. I had to be flexible
or else I was going to go a little crazy.
As I laid back in my seat in the airplane, trying
to sleep, I finally glanced briefly back at the passenger behind me. Expecting to see an eleven-year old boy, I was quite surprised to see a 40ish man in a navy pin-striped suit. I slowly turned back around as thoughts raced through my head how I might be able to diffuse the kicking, one source of aggravation
, knowing full well that I could do nothing about the crying baby. I thought of sooo
many zingers that I could say to Mr. Pin Stripe. I actually laughed out loud at a couple. But as I thought a bit more, I realized that we were all
put in an uncomfortable and unfamiliar situation that made us react not like ourselves, the baby, me, Mr. Pin Stripe...
Knowing that I could have zinged the guy behind me was just enough to help me get through. I just smiled at each new slam I thought of, and was soon able to drift into a dreamless, but somewhat restful nap. Being flexible and in control helped me get some rest and prepared me for the nightmare I was soon to face called US Customs. Controlling your words and actions, a unique way to endure,
during times of great stress or a foreign situation. Try it,
you'd be surprised how it spills into the rest of your dealings.
© by rayannethorn