|By Mendel Cohen |
Sometimes I wonder: Do suitcases get anxious?
Do they ever think: "There are so many of us! Oh man, I'm just another piece of baggage on the long line, waiting to be moved around"? Do they have moments of self-loathing ("I am a big fat heavy red suitcase") or jealousy ("Wow, that's a nice looking blue carrier over there... he made it to priority class and executive baggage...")? Do they get afraid when being checked-in and left to go down the dark tunnel alone, to the unknown?
Do they feel violated, when they go through a security check, being opened up, sifted through and examined by complete strangers?
Do they feel relief at the trip's end, being wheeled on a porter's trolley, snuggling comfortably in the cab's trunk?
Are they concerned about what is being packed into them?
Moving on a carousel, traveling through a system. Feeling like one small nothing amongst so many others; often finding it hard to express oneself.
However, like that piece of luggage, my exterior self is almost besides the point; a bonus when attractive and pretty, but not essential. The interior, what is inside the package, is what really counts.
Am I well-packed?
What is put inside of me is what I will be when I arrive, further down the trip. Is it all good? Will it remain in place? Or will it get creased and dislodged en-route? If it does, will it still survive?
And yes, the security check. It's an imperative part of the process, monitoring that everything inside is safe, and supposed to be there. Of course only authorized personnel have the right to check.
The long carousel is time; it moves, whether we like it, or whether we are ready, or not. It is no good falling off, or being left behind.
And there is (nearly) always somebody at the other end, waiting for us (im)patiently; hoping we are safe; anticipating our arrival, and looking out for us, with such diligence.
How happy is the traveler when his belongings arrive, whole, intact and on time!
Yes, I'm just another piece amongst countless others. But I have the ability to make all the difference: to the people I encounter, and in the life I wish to lead. I belong to somebody. People await my arrival; anticipate our next encounter.
How good it is to be moving along a secure and structured line!
I am on a long journey. Sometimes I'm at places where I feel at home. Sometimes I am homeless and lost; I feel misplaced, wondering: where will I end up? But G-d has packed me well: with morals, values and lessons that I most need. He, personally, checked me in. He even tracks me down when I get myself on the wrong plane and makes the arrangements get me back on the track.
Some parts of the journey are out of my hands: lazy baggage handlers, power failures, delayed flights. I encounter interruptions and turbulence. But the crucial thing is that I'm a well-made piece of luggage; I won't fall apart during transit.