Thursday, May 15, 2014
On a warm spring day, a young boy walks briskly down the sidewalk, the smell of fresh cut grass mixed with exhaust fumes from the lawnmower invades his nostrils like the vanguard of a barbarian horde, marching for chaos's sake, forging a path to the olfactory nerve with the objective of inducing a slight nauseation. He ignores the sensation and trudges on, unable to appreciate the soft song of the birds and the breeze. He glances up at an airplane passing far overhead and wonders: Is there someone up there in that airplane looking down out the window at me right this instant? He thinks to the moments he has spent on airplanes gazing absent-mindedly out the window. Perhaps a mile up in the sky, another young boy in the midst of intermittent chimes and the subtle roaring of jet engines is staring down at him, trying to ignore the building pressure in his ears. He holds eye contact with the hypothetical boy for a few seconds more before turning his head back down to the sidewalk. With his eyes directed elsewhere, it was a uniform flat surface under his feet, but now he can feel each crack through his shoes, and unconsciously adjusts his stride so that each gap in the walkway falls directly beneath the arch of his foot. He forgets where he is going for a moment, his legs are on autopilot, but this is a reliable software, and no matter how far his mind wanders, his body will not miss the turn. His body and mind are unified in their desire to get home, to walk up the steps of the front porch, turn the key in the lock, feel the loving embrace of the air condition, shrug off his backpack, slip off his shoes, and collapse onto the couch.