16,700 feet in the air. Still climbing
. We can see the rounded fluffy tops of the clouds
below us. The plane (the smaller kind) rolls and turns and judders, as if negotiating a rocky road below. I'm trying not to think about it too clearly. How amazing to be speeding through the sky, in a lump of metal.
The beauty of the tops of the little fluffy clouds astound me. Smiling, the air stewardess offers me some Macademia nuts and some orange juice. Calm, politeness can exist even here - so high up in the world. 60 miles away now, at 27,000ft. The coast line below out of view.
The Macademia nuts might serve as a useful snack in my long stop over, three countries from here. So I'll save them. But in another sadder, darker place in my mind that I don't want to admit to, I reason with myself; 'I can't remember if I have ever had Macademia nuts before'. Images of my face blowing up into a balloon with an unexpected alleric reaction taunt me. The sensations of suffocation visit me breifly as a warning. Better save them until I'm not so far above the nearest hospital.
There are no wings on my feet. Lucky science managed to cheat nature so that I didn't need them. Which means ME, a mere, mere mortal can float around in the Heavens. The macroscopic world I live in day to day, looks microscropic from here. I can see the big picture. I can have some perspective.
That dark, unreal place in my head becomes kinder and congures up amusing images to soothe me. Wouldn't it be funny if the plane had a Dukes of Hazard style horn and big flashing lights. With 'In Allah we trust' daubed accross the nose. What if I had bought the Macademia nuts from a guy holding up a cardboard box stuffed full of sweets? What if I had had to barter for a good price?
No room for any such messiness this far from the ground. Everything is clear, uniform and relaxed. I am a passive passenger, here to be soothed. How pleasant. How civilised, this far from civilisation. How vulnerable.
I'm feeling calmer now. Even the bumps and undulations of the cloud below seem smooth as I look down on them. Who cares how high we are. They should stop displaying facts and figures, and just disply the words; 'well we were high before, but now we are really, really high.' No, it would be foolish to evoke excitement this far from the ground though. Amazement and delight could all too easily turn to panic. Facts and figures are solid, even if the ground below us isn't.
My mind tells me this would be a good time to contemplate the existance of God. But the relaxed atmosphere brings me back to the same old conclusion. There is something amazing and awe inspiring out there, but I don't know where or what it is. I feel all too aware that my drive to believe would quicken ten fold if I were strapped to the top of the plane, instead of being comfortably ensconsed inside it. I give in to myself, hoping that that greater being has a better perspective than I do, and that somewhere, one picture, one world, one view exists. If I could just find it.
Time passes and my perspective on one thing becomes clear. I love him enormously. My place is with him, where ever that may be. I love him now as much as I did when I hugged him goodbye, when I could feel him sleeping next to me, when he ate the food I cooked him, when we forgave one another and started to heal, when we decided we needed some space, when we fought and fell apart. When we looked at eachother with coldness. I loved him through all of that. It has taken 30,000 feet of perspective to make it so clear. Reassured with this truth the murky depth of my mind lets me out of it's grip, to gulp the beauty I can see from the window.
The Macademia nuts are yummy. I'll buy something else when I land.