After an early morning flight to Atlanta, I found myself looking out the window longingly, and only finding the dreary rain. Normally, the rain brings about a peace like no other, but I was anxious to make it to San Antonio and all I could hear around me were complaining travelers and groggy attendants. I found myself clinging to my guy and looking for comfort as the panic began to set in. He silently and subtly squeezed my hand with a familiar strength and I was alright again until, before I knew it, we began loading into the plane one by one. We found our seats by the wing, and he gave me the window seat. I looked out at the rain again and remembered that it’s familiar pitter patter against the window was my favorite thing. I imagined the scent of petrichor instead of too much Axe body spray directly ahead of me. I wished for a cup of tea and a blanket, but no such luck. Again, a familiar strength squeezed my hand and I did my best to breathe. He asked if I was excited and I smiled brilliantly in direct defiance of my sudden unhappiness. The SouthWest safety briefing made me giggle and the jitters began to dissipate a bit. The plane launched.
The first thought I had on the previous flight was that I
had wings, but now I wondered what the Atlantan’s below planned on doing that
day. Would they still go to work on this gray Friday morning? Would they stay
in and watch a movie? Admittedly, I was a bit lost in thought when he asked me
to look at the sea of clouds. We hadn’t made it past the low cumulus clouds yet
and I wasn’t sure what he was preparing me to look at (remember, my first
flight was before dawn). The window was all a whitish gray. As we exited the layer
of clouds we were in, I noticed from the peripherals of my vision that it was
bright. I perked up and looked out the window at curly, wispy, fun cirrus
clouds above me and then to the east at the closest, brightest star in the sky.
It should have been totally obvious. I consider myself a scientist and engineer at heart. I should have expected it, but the overwhelming uplifting feeling I experienced as I scanned the skies brought a tear or two to my eyes. I was so grateful for the mood boost. I smiled as he squeezed my hand and kissed my forehead. For the first time in my adult life I realized,
The sun still shines on rainy days.
Later, after returning to work I happened to talk to a pilot who told me that it doesn’t matter how many times you leave an airport on a rainy day, once you’re ten thousand feet in the air, in the direct light of the sun; you are better, you are happier, and you are more at peace than you were on the ground.