Postcards on my wall…

They are starting to slip off the wall. My collection of postcards, gathered over the years and thousands of miles. Each of them hung with pride like tattoos for my bedroom. There are more than fifty of them. I don’t remember who gave me the one from Egypt. The one from Michigan came from an exboyfriend. The white Route 66 postcard came from a pair of elderly newlyweds.  Each one has a story or a memory behind it.

I like to travel. It’s really not a secret. I like the feeling that comes when I  buckle my safety harness on a plane and hear the engines start to whine. A delicious tingle of anticipation, of adventure, courses through  my body and I’m grateful to be alive. Grateful to have another adventure. Grateful for the chance to put another postcard up on the wall.

Most people pray that they’ll sit by someone exciting on the plane. Or if they are a good Christian, they pray that they’ll meet someone who needs encouraging or a reminder that Jesus loves them. I’m not like that. I usually pray that God will put me in the empty seat section. Even extroverts need down time.

The last time I flew, it was out of Dallas at an unholy hour of the morning. My friend and I had returned our rental car and tried not to fall asleep on the bus to the terminal. We got on the plane and I had a row to myself. I remember hearing the usual drone of the safety announcement and then I fell asleep sitting up. The next thing I knew, my eyes were opening slowly and we were still parked. The plane was silent. People were either sitting ramrod straight and staring straight ahead or spread out in their seat. And the cockpit door was open. From my seat halfway down the plane, I could see through the front windows. Something was not right.

Half a dozen thoughts skidded through my head. Had we been hijacked? Had people been drugged with some sort of poisonous gas? Where were the pilots? I looked for my traveling buddy. She was awake, just staring into space. It was still early.

“Pssst. Jess!” It didn’t seem right to talk loudly when the plane felt like a funeral parlor.

“What’s going on?”

She yawned. “Didn’t you hear the pilot over the speaker? And all the stewards?”

Heck no. I can sleep through anything. “Um. Maybe you should tell me.”

“You really must have been tired. There were a lot of announcements. We have a flat tire or something. They have to find a replacement.”

Lame. For once, I wished my hearty imagination had been right. Or even just a smidge closer to the truth. I’m convinced that when imagination was being doled out to my family, I told the rest of them to look the other way and then proceeded to steal their share and run like mad. It’s a blessing and a curse. I’m never bored for long but I’m easily distracted by a daydream.

Postcards are like story matches to me. Each of them represents a place, a culture, a grand adventure just waiting to be had. It makes me sad that some of them are starting to fall off my wall. It’s like part of myself is sliding away with it.

It must be time for another trip.

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Comments
One Response to “Postcards on my wall…”
  1. Hani says:

    I just found a postcard in my car I was supossed to send you last year. It has Paco and Nely’s signature on it. “Spring break 2009” I can’t believe I didn’t send it to you! Shame on me. I’ll try to send it out as soon as possible for your collection, no matters it’s one year old now.

    ps- Or maybe it’s time for you to come down to México for your postcard!

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