Well, it’s been a busy couple weeks. Emily and I returned home from our cruise back on Saturday February 11th, getting back to our house at around 12:30 am. Then, went to bed, got up Sunday morning, went to mass, did two loads of laundry, packed again, went back to the airport, and I left for Frankfurt, Germany at 7:30 pm Sunday night. This one, however, was a work trip. No tropical ports of call for me this time. I arrived in Germany at about 10:30 am Monday (German time), drove two hours to my hotel, tried to stay awake the rest of the day, attended meetings on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, drove two hours back to Frankfurt, stayed overnight, and flew out at 9:30 am Friday back to Detroit.
Basically that entire paragraph is my way of justifying not posting anything for the past week. I had grand ideas of posting from Germany, but flying through the night on Sunday and trying to stay awake on Monday had me so screwed up that I could barely make it through the workday and then dinner without passing out. So, I’ve been quiet for a week, and only posted twice the week before that (the week of the cruise). Time to get back on track.
It’s kind of weird being detached from society for two weeks. I’ve become so used to getting news and information instantly, that having no smartphone access and pretty limited internet acces for two weeks was a bit painful. Is it bad that, in my mind, the two best things about getting home were:
- Getting back to normal life with my wife, Emily
- Getting my phone back
Yes, in that order. Now, I didn’t have to go two straight weeks without my phone. Between when the cruise ship arrived in Miami on Saturday morning, until our flight to Detroit left on Saturday night I got to use it. And then again from when the plane landed in Detroit until the plane took off to Frankfurt on Sunday night I had use of it. If you are a smartphone addict like I am, you know that first thing you do upon landing is turn on your phone. It is absolutely imperative that you find out what happened in the world during the couple hours you were in the air! Normally what I find out is that absolutely nothing happened while I was in the air, but that was not the case upon landing in Detroit last Saturday night.
The plane’s wheels touch down, and I immediately grab my phone and turn it on, pretty much standard procedure. The phone goes through its “searching for signal” routine, then the magic bars appear, your indication that you are once again plugged into the world. Then, the phone goes through its routine of retrieving email, text messages, voicemail, usually all unimportant, at least on my phone. But this time there was something different; a notification from a news app that I have saying that Whitney Houston had been found dead. Did I read that right? I immediately go to the world’s most trusted news site – Yahoo! Yep, it was true. In that little two and a half hours between when we left Miami and when we arrived in Detroit the world had changed.
It may seem a bit dramatic to say that the world had changed, but remember, the next night I left for Germany, and I can tell you that the news of Whitney Houston’s death was everywhere there as well. The hotel I was staying at had about 150 channels on the TV in my room, from all over the world (even EWTN in what I believe was German) and I’ll bet you Whitney Houston was on 25% of the channels. This was big news indeed. I have no idea how the international press was handling the story (since I couldn’t understand what most of them were saying), but I hope it was a bit better than some of the things that I saw here in the States. I would love to get into some of the things I saw from the media covering this story, both good and bad, but I don’t really have time for that today, and that’s not really the point.
I guess the point is that sometimes the world can change in the blink of an eye, or in this case, the length of a flight. The world was a darker place when we landed in Detroit than it was when we left Miami. Not that my life changes any, I wasn’t ever even a fan of hers. But one of God’s creatures, who was given an incredible gift, was gone. And this world is a darker place because of it. Just as it is when anyone leaves this earth, despite any faults that they may have had.