airport

Its a small world after all

After my last week’s rant about how big the world is………..This happens.

Monday morning my phone rings…….It’s my cousin.

“You are never going to believe this,” he says.

Laughing, “What’s up?”

“Ok, so my manager was just in Minnesota for a conference and was flying home. He decided to fly to San Jose to go to some seminar there for a quick over nighter. He told me when he landed he wasn’t even sure where he was going to stay, but he found a Marriot in the heart of downtown San Jose. He was by himself and wanted to grab a drink so he went across the street to a restaurant called “Original Joes”.

It’s an Italian restaurant that’s been around forever. Anyway……….

He continued with his story, “You have to know that my manager will meet anyone and everyone. He can go anywhere alone and leave with 20 friends. He is that type of guy. He goes into the bar and there isn’t much happening. The crowd was light and he sat down at the bar. Ordered his drink and sipped it while chatting with the guy next to him. The guy was a bit older and seemed like a cool person. My manager said it was a little dead for his taste and asked the guy next to him for a better bar/restaurant. The guy said, ‘Well there is a place next door that is pretty fun with a lot of younger people who work there. I will take you there.’

“So my manager goes with this guy to “the Grille on the alley” which is a nice restaurant connected to the Fairmont Hotel. He walks in and for some reason, everyone knows this guy and everyone was coming up to him talking to him and hugging him. He thought nothing of it, and the two of them had a couple of drinks”.

My cousin hears all of this thinking. Wow, this sounds way too familiar, and continues to listen to him.

“So then the guy my manager was with begins to talk about his daughter and grandkids.  They exchange stories for about an hour or so until the guy he was with says that he has to go. He liked to be home and fed by 6:30 every night. My manager tried to convince him to have another, but he was certain that he was done for the evening. My manager said that he really appreciated him taking the time to show him around while he was here and they parted ways.”

Here is Monday morning and my cousin’s manager is telling my cousin this story and he is thinking…..NO way. “Wait, what did this guy look like? Can you describe him?”

“Ya, he was an older guy with grey hair and dark……Well, hold on a sec. I took a picture with him in my phone”…….He shows the phone to my cousin.

It was my dad.

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Home…………..

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After a nice relaxing weekend getting to see my parents, Dinner with friends, Golf and a couple of workouts, I decided that the weekend would be perfect if I ended it with a nice fattening meal at In-N-Out. The closest In-N-Out is a few miles away next to the San Jose International airport. I got my food and sat outside and faced the runway as I usually do. Damn you airport. I watched all the planes take off and land and it always gets my brain thinking. So here it goes.

Where are all those people flying to? Where are they coming from? Why?

I was born and raised in San Jose, CA and it makes me realize that the only people in this whole entire world that I know are here with me. I mean I know people who live in other states but that is so minimal compared to the amount of people in this world. On planet earth I only know a tiny little portion of it and just a small handful of people in it.That kinda makes me sad. Especially when I interact with 100’s of people a day. I walk by someone every minute and don’t even bother to say hi or get to know them. It should be mandatory or something. haha. I only know what its like to live here and no where else on this huge planet. It takes a couple hundred dollars and I can be in any other state within hours or any other country. Why don’t I travel more? If I died tonight in my sleep I would be extremely upset with how my knowledge of the world works is pretty much non existent. I have grown up in one of the nicest places in the world and I haven’t even taken advantage of this. I get so consumed with work that I am letting life pass me by, and its happening too fast. Tourist come from all over the world to see things that are in my backyard……I’ve never visited Alcatraz. I’ve never been to Yosemite. There are little things I can do but I just dont. Well Mark my words. I am going to start. I want to do everything, see everything, and then check out the rest of what my country has to offer. Its stupid not to really. A few weeks ago I had always wanted to go on a hike in San Francisco just across the Golden Gate Bridge so I did it. I was there and back in a couple of hours and its something I had always wanted to do. A place I always wanted to go. A spot on earth that I always wanted to be at.

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Back to the airport. Everybody really hates airports and the security lines and the flight delays….But really its a blessing that we get the opportunity to get on a plane and go thousands of miles away in a few hours. Imagine the world before airplanes. If I thought I was grounded in San Jose now, I couldnt even imagine. Every time I am on a flight I really take the time to talk to the person next to me. Its a special moment in time if you want it to be. Think about it….My last flight I sat and talked with this guy for about an hour. Complete stranger. Odds are I will never ever see him again in my lifetime so why was it he felt he needed to tell me all about his family and his kids? I will never see him again nor will I ever meet his family. Why did we talk about work? I will never ever work with him. To me its like he is reporting to me what is happening in his part of the world. He might be where ever he lives one day telling a story about a flight he took and the guy next to him was really cool and interesting. When the flight landed he said “until we meet again”. Something about that really resonated with me. I couldn’t forget it. We were never going to meet again because the world is so big…..But what if we did?

I’m not really sure what I am trying to say, or what point I am trying to make but I just feel really small right now. I want to try to make an impact on more peoples lives. Sometimes it doesn’t take very much…..maybe even a simple “Hello” as I pass by………

San Jose will always be my home but maybe its time I see how other people live in this world.

 

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