Monday, October 4, 2010

The Middle Seat

Thank you all so much for your lovely comments 
regarding my last post.
Since flight stories are a delight,
here is another one for you.
A few months back
as I sat in the plane waiting for takeoff
a young man with a backpack
came on board late.
Almost all the seats were taken.
All in fact, but two.
Two middle seats.
One next to me.
The other behind me.

The young man walked past me looking for a place to stow
his luggage.
I waited.
The flight attendant tried to hurry him.
There are two middle seats, he said.
The man walked to the nearest middle seat,
which was the one behind me
and asked to sit.
The men behind me shook their heads and pointed to the middle seat
beside me.

This I didn't see.
I only knew he came to be by my side,
and asked to sit in the middle seat next to me.
I jumped up, and stepped out into the aisle.
He said, "Thank you."
I told him, "It's my pleasure."
He sat. I sat and leaned away from him.
As the plane took off, the young man turned to me and said,
"You don't need to lean away."
I smiled. "I know that the middle seat is the least enjoyable.
I wanted you to have plenty of room."
And then I told him that I often speak of the middle seat.

How everyone on the plane is a mother, father, brother, son.
They are on their way to a loved one, to work, to play.
And all they want is for someone to see them as a person
who needs a seat.
Instead of an object or obstacke,
someone who is in the way.

The young man was a teacher.
He was headed across the country to work with some students.
I was headed home.
We talked long about the middle seat,
and the meaning behind seeing people as people.
People just like yourselves,
who just want to sit..


  1. UGH! I love the middle seat when it's empty. Hate it when it's full! :)

    Thanks for the insight. I will certainly have a different opinion now. :)


  2. Another lovely! I am so excited for this book to come out! :)

  3. Jean, I really would like to thank you so much for visiting my blog so that I could discover yours! Your words are comforting and uplifting and have started my day off perfectly. Thank you. I also love those pink photos. I have a couple of other blog buddies who enjoy Pink Saturday. You may know Pom Pom and Monica from The White Bench. They love pink too!

    Have a great week
    Carolyn xo

  4. You seriously AMAZE me!!!! I loveeeeeeeeeeeeee your stories! :):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):):)

  5. Hi Jean-two beautiful posts! (the last one and now this one) I am not a comfortable flier, I will never let it keep me home, but I just don't like the whole being up in the sky thing!
    You have a very soothing, peaceful way about you that comes through in your writing!

  6. thank you for this post - it reminds me to be more understanding when I'm flying. everyone needs a seat!


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