Layover

Memphis, TN. I do like the accents here. I’m not sure the spoken words are even relevant. I could probably be on the receiving end of a Tennessee belle’s drawl-laden public berating and still just grin and nod. I don’t plan on putting that theory to the test during my brief stay here today, mind you.

I’m a big fan of airports. Aside from the fact that I enjoy traveling, there is something about the perpetual bustling of people making way to their respective destinations that lends me comfort. I don’t know, maybe it’s one of the few times I actually feel as if I am going somewhere in life. I enjoy watching people as they hurry by and find myself trying to figure out whether they are traveling to some fantastic get-away or perhaps returning from such to once again face the ultimately inescapable doldrums of everyday life. Of those that pass by, I wonder who is trying to contain the sometimes irrepressible excitement that comes from an imminent rendezvous with someone special, perhaps for the first time, or maybe a reunification with old friends.

It can be easy to forget that these strangers around us are not mere characters in a book whose sole purpose is to provide a backdrop against which our life, as the main character, plays out. It can be tempting to think of each person as a small constituent in a grand, automated architecture that serves strictly as filler, but it is important to remember this temptation toward indifference is no doubt mutual. In other words, most others do not share the high regard in which you and I hold you and I. I offer a two-part conjecture: not only are those around us just as significant as we are, but we are just as insignificant as those around us. Was that obvious? Nevertheless, I think an occasional reminder does nothing but good.

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