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Every night I see it at the same time when I go up to the terrace for my after dinner stroll, the blinking red and white lights of an airplane slowly and silently making its way across the sky. There seems something mysterious and magical about a flight when seen from far down below. You can even imagine it to be an earthbound UFO with creatures unknown within it either about to annihilate humans or save them from themselves. All you need is oodles of imagination.

As I stand watching the flight come from the north make its way in a southerly direction towards the airport not far away, I visualize of how it must be inside the flight just then. The Captain has probably made his announcement about the descent. Electronic items are to be switched off. The seat-belt sign is on. No more using the rest room. The crew has made all its check and are probably seating themselves.

The palpable excitement among the passengers would be unmistakable. Destination is only a few minutes away. Some are restless and fidgeting in their seat, anticipating the descent, impatient to be off the plane as thoughts of loved ones waiting to receive them at the airport or at homes fill their minds. Others are glancing out of the window, watching the pretty sight of lights. The first-timers might be ruing the fact that it is night and they are missing the beautiful coastline caressed by the sea. Yet others are totally indifferent, having made the journey too many times. Some are thinking of transport, are ready to grab the luggage and be off at the earliest.

I myself have taken this flight a number of times. Right about this time in the flight, I have to consciously check the involuntary silly grin that is liable to plaster itself on my face, for into my thoughts would have entered Luci. I think of the rousing welcome awaiting me, the way she would let everyone in the neighborhood know that HER MOM IS HOME. I picture her nosing through my things looking for treats, and smile involuntarily at how she makes away with my stole in her mouth. Apart from Luci, my thoughts drift idly to what vegetables the L&M would have got for the next day, if I should soak the rice and dal tonight for making dosa batter the next day, whether there is time to fit in a blog post before bedtime, if any of my things have been moved in my absence.

There is nothing mysterious or magical happening inside the plane. It is life as usual, mundane, ordinary. Day in and day out similar scenes play out. In spite, for one standing below and watching, even one who has done the flight a number of times, the sight seems mysterious. One thing is clear. Distance lends magic to even those things you have known closely. Yup, that is yet another #shailism from me.

©Shail Mohan 2016