I flew from Portland to Hollywood yesterday to see my (one and only) granddaughter for the first time. The plane trip took two hours.
Maybe not in rock solid reality, since I'm still able to put up a blog post on an unfamiliar computer, and Evelyn doesn't do much but sleep, cry, poop, pee, eat, and look around in an unfocused fashion.
I struggled mightly with Alaska Airlines to get me an aisle seat for my trip to the Burbank airport. None were available. So I ended up crammed into a window seat next to a large man who couldn't help oozing over into my own none-too-large space.
Which put me even closer to the window. Fortunately, it was clear almost all the way to southern California. From the left side of the plane I had great views of Mount Hood, Lake Tahoe, Yosemite Valley, and other sights.
Including a vapor trail. It was just above my plane. We paralleled its path for many minutes. Another jet must have passed by on the same route not too long ago. The vapor trail was beginning to dissipate, just like me.
And all of us. Even including Evelyn. But almost certainly she'll be passing through life for a lot longer than I will, on her own journey that, unlike the two jets', won't come close to parallelling mine.
That's the circle of life. When my daughter was born, I felt more a part of it. Now that I've held Evelyn, even more so. I'll die one day, as will each of us. Yet we all will leave behind traces--"vapor trails" that interect the paths of other life-travelers.
My daughter, Celeste, and her husband, Patrick look wonderfully familial now. We actually sat down last night to a dinner prepared by these two previously "let's eat out" types. Of course, a one month old baby puts a crimp in your Hollywood dining options.
I taught Evelyn how to Tango and Tai Chi today. She's pretty good. Knows how to follow beautifully, like a babe in my arms. When she learns how to walk, we'll be able to progress even further.
Just a few hours until Mother's Day. My daughter is looking the part. Amazing! She makes salads, she changes diapers, she pushes a stroller, she dances with Evelyn to the same "Grease" record that I listened to a jillion times in the '70s when Celeste was young.
In short, she's a mother. And a vapor trail. That another oh-so-cute little plane is following.