October 8, 2022

Dispatches from Heathrow Airport terminal 5

Today went to Heathrow Airport to collect two of our favorite friends who flew all the way from Portland to visit us.  They are absolute legends who made the 11 hour flight with their 18 month old.  

While waiting at arrivals I realized I hadn't been to an airport since we flew to the states in 2019.   

I'm not sure if it's pandemic, or having kids, or both, but I could barely handle the excitement and emotion at arrivals.   I was at international arrivals, and I came near tears each time a child squealed and rand into their parents/grandparents arms as they came through the doors.

I think a lot about absence and the value of interpersonal interaction.  I couldn't think of any amount of WhatsApp or FaceTime that would provoke anything similar to those arrivals hugs.  

I wondered how long it had been for these people, and how many people expected it to be that long.  No one.

The world seemed so big, since 2020.  I spent so much time at airports before then.  I never used to notice what was happening around me.  I don't remember noticing the kids.  Or the mom who lept over the boundary to hug her teenage daughter, with the same overwhelming desire as the toddler running to his grandfather.

For now, I am so excited to see our friends again.  I have missed people a lot.

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