I am writing this morning from a hotel in Chicago. I stayed here over night and I will be returning to Ohio today. This is my first blog in several weeks as I needed a break to formulate some new material. I loathe routines and this blog was becoming just that. There is much I can write about and many humble brags that can be interjected into this entry. I was inspired by every country I visited, the friends I spent time with and the new friends I met. I undeniable learned and retained an extraordinary amount of information from my cultural experiences and interactions. I dreamed nearly every night of people that have crossed paths with me over the last decade.
Upon my return to the States last year in Europe, I felt a sense of urgency and a need for familiarity. Stephanie and I just broke up and I was moving from Charlotte. I messaged and texted everyone I knew seeking approval and comfort. This year in transit back, I was overcome by a feeling of anxiety. I almost began to cry pondering about returning to a job that I .... , without my own home to live in and with no one special to share life with. Then inspiration found me in the most unlikely fashion.
On the plane from Madrid to Chicago I sat in the middle row. The last three people to board were a family, mother, father and son. I was located on the right side isle seat, the boy on my immediate left, his mother next to him and his father to the far left. The boy sat down and immediately said "hola" in a soft voice. His mother appeared Spanish and since we were on an Iberia flight, I assumed the boy spoke Spanish. I soon discovered that he spoke perfect English and Russian. I have been told that I am "not good" with kids. I generally feel extremely ackward when interacting with them. However, this boy instantly reminded me of myself.
We made small conversation about our Ereaders and our trips oversea. His mom discussed and I eagerly listened to every word about their trip to Spain and Italy. Midway through the conversation, in mature manner, the boy asked me if I had a family of my own. When I told him I did not, he responded by saying that I should think about it one day. This statement resonated when I later observed him sleeping on his mother's lap. Seeing this melted away the hopeless feelings that has overcome me in transit. I was moved by their mother/child relationship. We all talked more after everyone took naps. The mother told me about how their eldest son was in law school. I told her about my struggles as a lawyer. His father chimed in on the conversation. The boy pleaded to me not to give up on law but also to do exactly what would make me happy.
At one point in the conversation I found out the boy was an amazing piano player, good enough to become a professional. I told him I would look him up on YouTube and remember him when he becomes famous. At the end of the flight, he gave me one of his father's business cards with his name and a message that read "met you on the plane from Madrid to Chicago". I was touched.
The guy who is incredibly awkward around children just made a friend. I presented his parents with a business card and told them to have their son contact me if he had any law questions. This flight turned into one of my best moments of the entire trip.