Sometimes delayed flights are the greatest gift. No, I wasn’t initially happy when yet another delay was announced, nor when I first anticipated four hours of dragging my roller bag through a crowded airport. Next, the fire alarm system was tested every five minutes with blaring noise and lights. We’re told to disregard it by a woman on a microphone whose nasal delivery was actually more annoying than the alarm.
Then I notice a group of five or six business people standing in a circle talking and laughing together. They look genuinely sad when they begin to shake hands and part ways, but as they separate their steps are light and their smiles linger.
Three young people sit next to me on the cold, gray leather chairs. I notice they are quiet, but very interactive as my chair bounces with their energy. I look up and see an animated conversation passing between them in sign language. The joy on their faces trump the silence and fill their space with joy.
A mother to my left is playing an imaginary game of hopskotch with her toddler to keep her busy. The little girl has big brown eyes and curly hair, and she giggles with delight as her mom hops through invisible squares in her high heels.
Of course there is the obligatory, frustrated traveler who is determined to bring a bag the size of a sea captain’s trunk onto the flight. He yells and screams in disbelief as the agent tells him he must check his bag. Those of us watching roll our eyes, shake our heads, and pat the agent on the back to let him know that he has our support.
My flight delay gave me a gift of watching the different ways we reach out and connect with each other. The eye contact, the smiles, the sign language, the pats on the back. Today reach out to somebody, connect, and then pay attention to how it energizes you. If you want to change your own attitude, reach out to others.
We’re pack animals, and we’re better together.