The last time I was in an airport, it was November of last year, when we flew back East for Thanksgiving. Going from traveling nearly every month, much of it international, to zero travel is a lot like running at full speed and then trying to stop, skidding, screeching, screaming.
I think those last three words describe 2020 aptly.
The next time I enter an airport, it won’t be lightly. It won’t be taken for granted. It’s a privilege and an honor to get to travel.
I always knew that, but it’s hitting home a bit harder these days.
Airports are a place of excitement and anticipation. It’s the anticipation of getting to a new location or to see familiar faces. It’s a change from the norm, and it’s a routine that had a familiar rhythm made from millions of travelers over decades, and a service industry crafted to cater especially to that crowd.
Crowds are foreign to me now. I watch movies and feel uncomfortable when I watch the characters hug or interact with strangers on the street. Unmasked? In close contact? How could they? Don’t they know the world is in danger?
This is my dearest hope: That 2020 is merely a manifestation of the world needing to reset its goodness. We are at a low so that the world may enter its next high. So while the goodness and happiness and light are isolating and regrouping and preparing for their reemergence, all we see is the badness. The crooked politicians, the disease, the filth, the terrible world is getting worse. But I hope that it means that it will get better soon.
I really hope.
[Photos taken on film; Canon AE-1, Kodak Portra 400; Dulles International Airport, Virginia, November 2018.]