Flight of the tiny humans

My friend Sandie calls them tiny humans.

Little kids with their delicate little voices that sound like a feather tickling my cheek. Voices that rise and fill with delight and awe at the things I’ve long forgotten to notice. “Look Daddy, look what I can do!” squealed the little girl with the downy-fine light brown hair standing on the airplane seat upon discovering that she has the power to move the window shade up and down and up and down.

“Daddy look! There’s aNOTHer airplane! and ANOTHER one!” sang the little blonde boy looking out through the little round window and spotting the seemingly endless row of aircraft docked at gate after gate after gate. For he was sitting inside a thing of mythical legend and fantasy books and fairytales. To him.

“I’m coming for you Emma!” shouted the little big brother to his crying sister who’s become “lost” on the other side of the empty gate seating area. He’s proud and strong and runs to save his sister from sure disaster.

Oh my, how much there is to re-learn from watching these tiny humans.  They still delight at new discoveries without fear or skepticism or jaded cynicism.  They notice colors and shapes and objects as if they’re gold in a riverbed. They feel excitement at phenomenon like birds flying inside an airport. They feel joy at the discovery of moving sidewalks. They feel glee that there’s a little panel on the seat in front of them that turns into a coloring table at the turn of a little knob. They…feel.

On my recent trip, which obviously involved some time in airports, I found myself putting away my book and turning off my cell phone just to listen for those delighted little voices and then watch and notice the things all the precious tiny humans found wonderful. Tried to imagine what it’s like to discover something new for the first time, again, and to delight in something, again, and to laugh at something not because it’s funny, but because it’s amazing (or at least, it once was). I tried to imagine what it’s like to find everyday things  – things I take for granted – exciting and new and awesome and unimaginable instead of mundane or expected or dirty or inconvenient or in my way. It was pretty cool. Colorful. Musical. Magical.

And if doing that could make time in an airport delightful, imagine (if you still can) how much better it could make life.


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