• Kim O'Flaherty

First Flight

Two weeks ago, I took my first flight since the pandemic hit. Fully vaxxed and still masked, I flew from Minneapolis to Colorado Springs. I had anticipated some panicky moments of uncertainty and worrisome doubts; instead, it all felt surprisingly normal! Everyone in the airports and on my flights followed Covid protocol and were mask-compliant. The blessings of normalcy and trust replaced my qualms.

Traveling again was a milestone for me. Lucky to be able to work from home and order necessities online for so many months, I had stayed in my bubble, seeing only family and friends who were being equally safe. Cautious road trips allowed me some freedom, but were undertaken with a certain amount of trepidation.

I thrive on the feelings of exploration and discovery, of being able to encounter new places. I’m ever thankful for opportunities to experience different cultures, learn new traditions, and simply see what’s happening around the corner. So I was strangely moved when I walked through the jetway. Being thankful for all of the essential workers from multiple professions whose incalculable services keep our world spinning, for our faith in science that moves us forward, and for my privilege. . .I opened my arms to the welcoming skies, and to the coming together of hearts and worlds.