Airport Assumptions

April 23, 2009
By
I am sitting in the airport, bored. My brother just walked off to do who knows what, and my parents decided to be adventurous and look around a bit. I’m thinking of all my homework assignments that are due when I get back to school. I could be working on them, but why should I work ahead? After all, this is my spring break, my time off. Why should I bring school into my free time when the teachers aren’t here forcing me to? My boredom is still here. It continues to make my brain ache. I feel like I should be doing something, not just sitting here.

The urge to do something is really getting to me, so I decide to take a walk to Starbucks, located a mere hundred feet from our gate. We are at gate 10. I get up, and taking my bag with me, trudge towards Starbucks. I pass gate 11. I’m over half way there. Finally I reach my destination and buy my java chip frappe that I had been craving. I take it back with me to our gate, sit down, and start drinking. I am now content. The joy from my frappe is short lived however, when I realize that drinking a frappe does nothing to satisfy a person’s boredom. It’s hopeless. But at least now I look like I’m actually doing something, and don’t look like the weird girl sitting in an airport all by herself with nothing to do.

I love to people watch. I look straight across from where I’m sitting and see a middle aged lady with graying hair. She’s wearing an orange sweater with a big button in the middle of it over top of a white shirt. She is also fashioning tan pants, leaf-green colored shoes, orange earrings to match her sweater, and an assortment of bracelets of every color imaginable. A yellow leather handbag is gently propped up in the seat next to hers. The lady appears to be deeply absorbed in the book she is reading. I bet she’s an author. I bet she’s an author who is on her way to a big book signing somewhere in Maryland. I switch my attention to the lady sitting a few seats down from the first.

She is a plump old woman who is clothed in a vast array of pink attire. Her cardigan is pink. Her backpack is pink. Her handbag is pink with purple, red, yellow, and green accents. Her pants however, are black. She is happily reading a newspaper comics page. I think of what her story could be. I’ve got it!

She is a grandma who is on her way to visit her grandkids. She’s not the cranky, strict kind of grandma though. She’s the fun kind who will show up in a bright green Volkswagen beetle rental car and a bag full of candy and all kinds of other goodies. She’s from Arizona so she only gets to see her grandkids three times every year—once for Christmas, once for Easter, and once when they come to see her during the summer.

I move my gaze to the right. I see two obnoxious little boys. They look about four years old. They’re running around recklessly yelling and throwing their little toys at a garbage can. I look around wondering whose they are, and I spot him. He is a man about 30 years old with tired eyes and dark brown hair standing up all over the place like someone had purposely messed it all up. He has a pair of sunglasses resting on the top of his head. The man is sporting a wrinkled polo shirt and jeans, with a backpack half-hazardly strewn over his shoulder. In each of his hands are miniature carry-on bags.

He could be on his way to his mom’s house for Easter. His wife probably urged him out of the house, saying that it would be good for him to take the kids and go visit Grandma. Meanwhile, his wife is at home sitting in her pajamas, contentedly watching a marathon of Grey’s Anatomy. He is wondering what possessed him to make him even think about taking the boys by himself to see their grandma. He’s in for a long week. In my mind I wish him luck.

I turn and look who is sitting next to me. It’s an elderly couple with a few tattered bags laying by their feet. The old woman is dressed in a teal jacket and gray pants. She’s busy reading a book with a worn flowered cover. The old man is wearing gray pants as well, but instead matched with a green striped shirt. He is attempting to fix his watch which appears to be broken. They both look tired but cheerful.

Perhaps they are on their way back home from England. They like to travel all around the world, but England is their favorite place to go. They have spent the past month in the countryside in a little cottage with a pond. They love it there much better than their farm in Kansas because of the rolling hills. Kansas is far too flat for their liking. However, because they have been gone for an entire month, they are more than ready to get back to their home and see all of their family again.

I look around and I spot a young girl still in her teens wearing a black and white striped shirt underneath a gray knee-length dress, with deep pinkish-maroon leggings, and brown buckled boots. She has long, dark red hair, thick black eyeliner, and a pierced lip. She’s carrying a brown and green plaid backpack. The girl is standing by herself with her arms crossed, listening to music on her pink and white headphones.

I imagine the girl is an only child, and she’s on her way from her mom’s to her dad’s. Her parents got divorced when she was nine, and she’s had to travel back and forth every month between their houses ever since. She hates it. She’s wondering why her parents couldn’t have just stayed together. It sure would have made going to school easier without all of the switching back and forth every month. If only they understood how hard the divorce was for her; how deep the scars really were. I watch as she boards her plane. I feel a sinking sensation in my heart and I feel sorry for her. I stop myself. Wait a minute. Why should I feel sorry for her? This isn’t even true… I only made it up just now.

The same goes for all of these people’s stories. None of them are even the slightest bit true. Or could they be?





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