When did I stop counting the planes?

May 12, 2009

I poured my body on the grassy lawn at the pier today.  A little tyke (we’ll call him Chance – my favorite name) was scrambling nearby with his young momma.  Maybe Chance was a one-year-old or possibly a few months older.  My guesstimation of a kid’s age is absolutely embarrassing.

I was focused on myself.  Thinking through my week’s agenda.  Stretching.  Chance was not a huge interest to me at the time.

He couldn’t form recognizable words yet, but his body language and excitement catapulted his little arm up to the sky when he saw a plane fly through the cloud above.  He was thrilled.

Chance caught my attention.  My mind stopped whirling and focused on the boy.  Then the plane.  Back to the boy.

I had not heard the plane.  I had not seen the plane.  I had not even looked up into the sky that day until his little hand guided my eyes up in the air.

Why did it take a one-year-old boy to direct me?  I used to find faces in the clouds repeatedly, and I would follow a plane’s trail with my eyes until it disappeared.  When did I stop counting planes?

Four.  I found four planes in the sky in the next moment.  Well, a few were actually helicopters but you get the idea. I was scanning the sky like a meerkat.   I started picking up the noise too.  I didn’t even need to see the planes to know they were near.  How did I not hear those engines zooming by me minutes before?

Maybe it’s the chaos of the city.  It could possibly be the massive amount of noise I consume every day.  I’m not sure if I’ll hear the planes tomorrow, but either way, Chance brought clarity to my misdirected gaze today.

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