Wednesday, June 22, 2011


It was time to fly home from Atlanta to Seattle.  My 18 month old (and only child at the time) was my reason to board the plane first so we made ourselves comfortable before all the other passengers started to get on. She loved people watching as everyone walked by or took their seats in front of us as I silently wondered who would fill the seat next to me. As soon as I saw him, I knew he would be my seat buddy and I have to admit, I was not at top game. 

Here comes this guy with gray curly hair standing straight up in a Lyle Lovett fashion with dirty clothes and wrinkly skin that looked worn and tired of the sun. He looked homeless.  His black grungy boots were sticking their tongues out at me, as if mocking the upcoming torture I was sure to endure and the laces clicked the emergency lights strips with every step.  He squinted at every seat label as he passed to see if he was to 35 yet.  Really?!  Since when do the seats on airplanes go in any order but numeric.   I had no idea his seat assignment but was certain Murphy's Law would plop him right next to me.   He made his way down and sure enough, that empty seat was about to be filled with a furry, drunk, rude man!   Great.  5 hour flight...

His name was Cory and he was the nicest man.  His feet didn't even stink after he took off these big work boots he had been running around in all day. Cory could tell I was exhausted as Caelan jumped up and down in my lap, tearing the pillows out from under peoples heads in the rows in front of us. He kept offering to hold her for a minute to save my legs but she wanted to save all her thrashing for me.  He told me all about his twin grandaughters and how he couldn't wait to be back home to Seattle. With kind smiles and an keen understanding of when to stop talking, the flight went by very smoothly and actually quite enjoyable.  I was glad that God put Cory on that flight to teach me a lesson. How ugly my heart was to assume such things about him but how convicted and changed I felt after sitting next to him in row 35.  Still praying the people around me felt convicted to forgive curious Caelan for pulling out their earphone countless times to ask them "whatcha doin?".


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