by Dave Markwell

My father-in-law came to town last week. He flew in from upstate New York on Saturday and will be here for a month or so. It’s always an adventure when “Hurricane Bob” hits town and my family looks forward to his visits.

While waiting for him to deplane and meet me at the “arrivals” area outside of baggage claim at the airport, I sat in my truck and watched people. I was uncharacteristically early and had some time to kill listening to the radio and watching travelers.

I always enjoy watching people. On this day, I loved watching people. The “arrivals” area at airports may replace Walt’s Magic Kingdom as the “happiest place on earth”.

Sitting in my vehicle with the music low and the windows cracked, I saw beautiful things. I saw smiles and hugs and kisses and love. Reunions between older dads and sons and daughters and mothers and grandparents and husbands and wives and their kids were magic.

Genuine and heartfelt smiles littered the breezeway as these strangers to me embraced and laughed and connected. In pure and honest moments, human beings of this earth reminded me of our collective meaning of life: the people we love.

Serious looking men in business suits jumped out of their driver’s seats and jogged to hug a thirty-something son, both men with smiling eyes and joy on their faces. Middle-aged women in yoga pants opened trunk doors and stood holding elderly mothers with gentle arms and the love that only mothers and daughters can share. Little kids ran up to grandpas and leapt into strong arms, laughing the laughter of children.

I watched these reunions and was moved. In a world of much disconnect and judgment, the truth of humanity was revealed: we are a good, kind and loving species. In spite of much evidence to the contrary, at our cores, we are creatures of love. A clear example of this occurs every hour of every day at the arrival zone. People of all shape, size, color, and creed wear their enormous capacities for love on their very human faces. A more pure representation of true love would be hard to find. It’s a beautiful thing to see…

[EDITOR’S NOTE:”Feel Good Friday” is a regular column written by Des Moines resident Dave Markwell, whose first book is called “A Feel Good Life” (buy it on Amazon here). Dave also extols to all neighbors: “Enjoy where we live. Put your feet on the pavement and truly feel how great it is to live here!” Also, you can “friend” Dave on Facebook here. Or work out with him at his exercise company Waterland CrossFit!]

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