Sunday, December 5, 2010


Subj: it really IS a small world
Date: Tue Dec 5 20:20:30 EST 2000

On one on of my flights home from Australia (with seven trips down and back, it is easy to get them mixed up), our plane touched down in New Zealand to let off passengers and pick up new ones. The woman who had been sitting next to me disembarked and another woman took her place for the remaining leg of the trip to Los Angeles.

I was aware that she was younger than my previous seatmate (and considerably younger than myself), but that was about all that registered. When I am flying, I don’t really notice much about the person sitting next to me. For one thing, I’m an old lady and it is not all that easy to turn my head all the way to the side to talk straight on. My tendency is to sort of talk past the person, if you know what I mean.

In any case, the young woman was busy, reading a book, so our talk was at a minimum. Truth be told, I was tempted to make a light comment to her about how much the green binding on her novel or whatever looked like it could have been a volume of the Writings, but it’s the sort of humor that requires a New Church audience to be funny.

In time, a meal was served. I finished first and my dishes were whisked away – but NO ONE was getting the last of my coffee, which was unusually good. I put up the seat tray to give my legs some more room. For some reason, I wanted to put down my coffee cup before finishing the last few drops, so I asked my seatmate if I could balance it on her seat tray. She said yes.

It’s an interesting thing that when people say “Thank you” and “My Pleasure,” we tend to look each other right in the eyes, which was what I did. I turned and, right in mid sentence, my words stopped and my jaw dropped and after a few moments of mutual stunned silence, I managed to get out, “Amy??” and she replied, “Mrs. Lockhart???” Here, Amy Grubb (now Childs), who had been in New Zealand visiting her finance, Robin, and I had been sitting right next to each other for hours without realizing it!

Thinking about that reminds me of when the Ripleys and Peddicords arrived for Elsa and John’s wedding.

Peggy and Jack, Jim and Renee and Eryn and Lauren had all arrived from Missouri and Karen had arrived from Reno. Linda, Bob and Paul had arrived from California. They all connected at our house.

Even though we’re all related through the Reynolds’ side of the family, they either hadn’t met or met a long time ago. When Bob met his cousin Karen, who are the same age, he fascinated her with how much he looked like her brother, Jim. She, in turn, seemed to fascinate him. He peppered her with all sorts of questions about her flight – had her meal been okay, did she enjoy the movie, was she comfortable. He took her by surprise with his final question, “How can you sleep on a plane? I’ve never been able to.”

Karen looked at him in stunned surprise – “How did YOU know that I slept on the plane.”

Bob’s face lit up with a cheeky grin as he answered, “Because we were sitting a few rows in back of you. There was something about you that caught my attention, but I had no idea we were cousins!” Both of them flew out of San Francisco – the Ripleys living outside of Sacramento and Karen in Reno. It’s a small world, indeed!

A happy traveler – The Gramster

Reposted with love in celebration of The Gramster's 05/14 centenary

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