Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Back to ABC... Keeping it Simple

Back to ABC... Keeping it Simple

carla.ornelas@gmail.com

I’d like to thank those that remembered me today considering that today was as much my day is it is any other six-year old! Celebration of Children’s day is something we can all do considering that inside our souls there lives an eternal child. In honour of this day I decided to share the secret of some of the best moments I’ve lived these past few days: those which I basically lived… simply.

Children love trips. My little brother wants to be a pilot and almost every kid I know shines at the opportunity to go on a plane regardless of where it’s going.
The child in me is more interested in the voyage rather than the destination.
Tired, drained, worn-out and beat… this is how I arrived at the airport on Friday evening after a day that had sucked all the energy out of me. I still had a ninety minute flight ahead before I could lay my head down to rest and somehow… that made all the difference!
There are few people that can comprehend my fascination with aeroplanes. How can I possibly enjoying being cooped up like a sardine inside a giant machine that could fall out of the sky… this of course is not to mention how exhausting the whole experience is.
I simply tell them that how you choose to live the experience determines how good or bad it can be…
To sit at an airport terminal with your legs tucked under you, a good book in your hand, your favourite music in playing through your earphones and occasionally watching a plane take off in front of you as you patiently wait for your own flight… is what I consider to be therapy!
Then there’s the take off, that exhilarating pull of energy in your stomach as you realise that you’ve no longer got contact with the ground and that you’re being taken higher than you can possibly reach… You sit for those ninety minutes and do whatever feels best: you can read, you can listen to your music, you can mellow in your thoughts… or you can close your eyes and merely feel your shoulder relax. At times, I wonder if time stops with the slowing down of my heartbeat.
Landing can be just as exciting, that cute airhostess that gotten me the apple juice earlier asked me to fasten my seatbelt and gave me one of those million dollar smiles that makes one grateful that it’s not only females that make airhostesses nowadays.
Watching a whole city beneath you; tiny lights zooming to and fro and the expansive view below that makes you feel small causes you to tingle in your seat. Excitement builds just as the plane flies closer to the ground, you take a deep breath as you brace yourself for that touch… that brute connection that tells you that you’re once again part of the earth.
I was so engrossed with the whole experience that I only realise that I’d been sharing the flight with a client when he tapped my shoulder at the luggage conveyer belts. Although I enjoy the solitude of travelling at night, I was still grateful for the familiar face and the friendly chat that allowed me the opportunity to rub off some of my travelling passion with a frequent flyer that had forgotten its taste.

Children look to be with the people that love them the most and give them the freedom to be themselves.
The child in me longs to be surrounded by the people that I love the most.
Spending two days with my cousin in Lisbon was like spending two weeks at a Club Med resort. I state this because all the objectives of a holiday were achieved: I managed to sleep soundly and restfully, I felt no pressure or responsibility and I shared my time with my cousin: a person that cares about me and that I love to bits!
In these two days we did some of my favourite things: we talked; we laughed; we watched movies (I recommend the Phantom of the Opera to all classical music lovers!) and we spent a whole afternoon at a book fair where I found my companions for my summer holidays! Searching through great covers, prologues and authors: I lost myself in a written world that I would gladly have locked my mind in! My pleasure and satisfaction concluded with a sigh, a bag of four new books and an ice cream!

Children aren’t afraid of asking silly questions!
The child in me has always wondered why people refer to some relationships as “cat and dog”. And why is the woman always portrayed as the cat leaving the male to be the dog? After some serious thought, I decided that it should be the other way around! Considering that in general, women have a greater capacity for faithfulness than men: women should be portrayed as the dog. Not to mention that a creature which is aloof and uncommitted such as the cat is more easily identified with men.
By the end of the weekend, I changed my mind!
Pandora and Kika are two gorgeous cats that have become extensions of my cousin’s family. Although they are loved and spoilt, they don’t give confidence easily and it became clear to me that I’d have to conquer their trust if I was to get close enough to pet them. Kika was the easier of the two; she eventually let me pet her when I found her on her favourite spot in the sun on top of the washing machine… the fact that I brushed her fur helped all the more! Pandora however wasn’t as easy and it was just as I was about to give up that she jumped on the couch and gave me the opportunity to touch her. She purred as I stroked her and I thought I’d finally won her trust, however just a half hour later she was running away again.
I realised then that perhaps it is fair to compare women to cats considering that a woman’s heart needs to be conquered. It takes patience to win her trust but always worth it in the end. However, never take a person for granted or you’ll lose them from your sight.

Children enjoy playing with other children.
The child in me feels the need to be around other kids.
Have you ever noticed how stupid people behave around babies? What would you think if someone made funny noises and pulled faces at you? Sometimes you just can’t help it!
Children have the tendency to bring out our most infantile reactions causing us to look like twits while we try everything to get them to smile. Luckily the baby boy I had the pleasure of meeting was a bubbly and friendly bag of giggles that didn’t hesitate to jump into my lap. Suppressing my most maternal instincts to go out and make one of my own, I decided that it was high time my cousins started having kids! (hint, hint!)

Children love trying out new things.
The child in me searches for new adventures, the kind that haven’t been tried out before.
Riding the train and eating Haagen Dazs whilst zooming on the highway were a definite first for me! I tried not to look so pathetic whilst enjoying a train ride that most people found a tedious mode of daily transportation. Engrossed with the view, I hardly felt the speed at which the train travelled by and I decided that a trip by train to Madrid or somewhere in Europe was a vacation definitely worth considering in future!
Praline Haagan Dazs… so good, you’ll think it’s a sin! The last time I had ice cream that good was Gino Ginelli’s Double Toffee back in South Africa. For a dairy lover such as myself, especially for one keen on ice creams this was a definite high-light to my trip to Lisbon! The best life’s lessons are those learnt together with your mates: I learned that you should always have spoons in your glove compartment and we learnt that wet wipes make a better emergency kit choice than mere tissues.

When you have a good friend for company, even the North Pole can feel like paradise… thank-you to my cousin, my friends and my colleagues that made the short time I had in Lisbon feel that much special!

Children know to trust their elders for knowledge.
The child in me knows to search for the experienced when looking for advice.
This advice was given over the two strangest Hawaiian glasses I’ve ever seen! However, it was as good as the exotic potion inside them and in the midst of sincere conversation, I was reminded that people only have the importance that which we give them. Even my pride couldn’t ignore the strong truth in the fact that the people we care about hurt us the most because of the way we feel about them. To keep yourself from disappointment or anger, you simply reduce the importance of that person to you. It is the way to cease the power of their behaviour over you. I have to admit that this isn’t an easy concept for me and that it is about time that I give some people less importance and others a lot more.

Children go home at the end of the day.
The child in me wished for nothing more than to go home… wherever that is.
Whilst sitting at Gate fifteen waiting for my delayed flight I heard the call that froze my thoughts:
“Passengers leaving for Johannesburg via Maputo must board at gate twenty six”
Although I knew I shouldn’t… I couldn’t resist the magnetic pull that placed me on my feet and took me in the opposite direction of where I was supposed to be waiting.
I watched as the passengers boarded the plane that would take them to the city that I’ve been missing for the last three and a half years. My throat tightened as I saw the last of the passengers board and I knew that it would be so easy to slip between them considering that the airhostesses hardly looked at the ticket and the plane wasn’t too full that I couldn’t grab the first open seat. It wouldn’t be the first time that such a mistake had happened; surely I’d get away with it…
My heart broke inside my frozen body as they closed the terminal doors. I watched the plane pull away from the hanger silently wishing that it would take me with it. The intercom announcing my actual flight brought me back to my senses and the rough landing on Madeira’s elongated airstrip made me wish I’d had the courage to board the plane back home…

Children know that the quickest way anywhere is to travel in a straight line.
The child in me reminds me to keep things simple. Life’s memorable moments are those which are made special by the beholder.
A rollercoaster ride can be just as significant as a trip to the supermarket, searching for the bread aisle.
How good a moment can be depends on the company and the perspective you choose to live with. Children know that fun and joy only require the basic desire.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

flying is everything you sayed and more. I share the same feeling. I also enjoy the hole process, the before and the after. Being a child... I miss it! Things were so simple then, living in dreamland, the fairytales... My inner child is what keeps me going on. Thanks for reminding me that. Big kiss from your frien Lou the singer

Sheara Camacho said...

Keep up the good work!
I'll be waitting for your book, after all you write as if you had magical fingers that spell messages that enchant us all ;).
Best Wishes
Sheara Camacho