These past four days have found me spending much time waiting in airports – for flights, hotel shuttles, coffee, internet access. I don’t mind it much, really. It’s relatively quiet. I’m in complete anonymity. I find an electrical outlet (and internet access), sip the coffee I’ve finally found, and then enter my virtual world. Even now, as I type, I am sitting in the Sacramento airport – plugged in, coffee purchased, awaiting a flight home. In the midst, I’m aware of how much easier it is to wait for things tangible than intangible.
I am relatively certain that my flight will arrive, that the shuttle will show up, that coffee will be crafted, and that internet access will be provided – even if I have to pay. Intangibles are far more illusive, hardly reliable, usually erratic, and completely undependable.
That said, when intangibles do show up, no matter what they are, when the waiting is over – for inspiration, love, faith, hope – and these in all their glory, magnificence, passion, and beauty, they so far exceed what I expect from service-providers like Southwest Airlines and Starbucks that the two do not even compare.
It’s true: the intangibles for which we wait can create anxiety and angst beyond compare. But seriously, is there really any conversation here?
A longed-for kiss compared to an on-time flight?
A brilliant blog post compared to a perfect-temperature Latte?
An idea or dream fulfilled compared to an efficient hotel shuttle?
The latter might be more dependable, but the former is unequivocally more meaningful, significant, and completely earth-shaking.
I’m willing to wait.