Monday, February 27, 2006

Two of a Kind, Each on Our Own

To be honest, how I arranged it, I’m not quite sure. I don’t really like travel that requires working on someone else’s schedule—unless it’s planned well in advance. That gives me plenty of time to make friends with the idea that I have to be at an appointed place at an appointed time. I guess this was one of the “kick in the adventure mode and see what happens” kind of things.

I had really needed to be on an airplane. We’re two of a kind—airplanes and I. We both travel alone through a silent sky. It’s not a choice. It’s just what we’re built for. Call it fate. Call it psyche. Call it DNA. It’s not a gift. It’s not a problem. It’s not something that’s anything. It’s just what is. Airplanes and I will always be slightly over-sized and ungainly when we’re on the ground and in one state too long.

It’s not that we mind having passengers or that we don’t get damn close to some people and certain places. People fill us up. Then they’re gone again. Places hold us close. Then we have to leave. That’s the way it works. It’s how it’s supposed to work.

I found an airplane that was going the way that I seemed to be going. Somehow I seemed to have the right kind of miles and the right kind of smile on to talk my way onto it. I even got a seat with enough leg room. I settled in with my headphones, and this time I was the grandchild of Richard Strauss, the composer. I drank wine, and listened to music.

The airplane and I landed. We were two of a kind coming down together. I always feel a little sad when I get off an airplane.

I was through the airport and into a rental car. They drive on my side of the road here. I thought I could find my way. I had time to get lost. What’s lost when you’re not really going anywhere? I breathed in the countryside, driving slow. I had traveled across an ocean and my eyes could believe I had traveled back in time.

I passed a man riding a bicycle in a suit on a back country road. I’d say he was sixty.

A couple was working in their garden. The garden was rich and dark. Garden. The garden was larger than half a city block. He wore a vest and a white shirt with buttons. She wore a green dress with an apron over it. Their hair was going gray. They made me think of the farmers in Van Gogh’s painting “First Steps.”

Welcome to Tuscany.

I drove a bit further. Then I pulled the car over to watch the sunset. I saw a boy walking through a large open field. He was an airplane too, I suppose. We were alone in our thoughts far apart, together, the same, yet different. We were two of kind, each on our own.

At sunrise, I was on a beach with bountiful clouds by an ocean of love.
By sunset I was by a bountiful field in an echo of solitude.

The world offers so much, if I see what I’m looking at.
—me strauss Letting me be


Kelley Bell said...

Hey, you're getting ahead of me Liz.

I just finished the last part of our untamable adventure in Florida.

Jet Lag.

ME Strauss said...

Hey Kelley,
Take your time. I plan to be here for a while. :)

The flight here is shorter than to California anyway. Tell Oprah you'll be home soon.


Dawn said...

Welcome to Tuscany! Whoa!
Scuzzi, signora, parla italiano? Wait while I grab my dizzionario Mondadori. I know I have it here somewhere . . .

ME Strauss said...

Italy makes people smile. A few more smiles and it has to be spring for sure. I just know it. I do.

Jennifer said...

Now those are some lovely images. I much rather be there, alas right now it's work and study. Four days till the exam...I'm a bit stresed. An open field with the sun setting sounds so much more appealing!

ME Strauss said...

So glad you made it over for this one. I know you like Italy. Maybe we can find Val Kilmer here again and do another chorus of "have a Little Faith in Me."


Jennifer said...

Val Kilmer here again and do another chorus of "have a Little Faith in Me."

**SIGH** (of pure content)

I'm SO in!


ME Strauss said...

Yeah, me too! . . . me too!

dog1net said...

First,I love the photo you use to caption this article. Second, your last line--"The world offers so much, if I see what I’m looking at."--brings this piece in for a perfect landing. The extended metaphor of plane and inner-being holds together really well.

ME Strauss said...

Thank you, Scot. It's lovely to have you stop by--I hadn't thought how airplanes must be on your mind.
That photo is a special one. I don't often choose people. Do I?

You words are particularly important on this one, because of what you see when you look.

Kelley Bell said...

The Rest of the Story

ME Strauss said...

I'm coming to read the rest of the story right now.