By: Lud Barrica
Few days ago, I saw a 5-second video clip of passengers applauding at the airport while a set of cabin crew and pilots walked by. I’ve never seen anyone at an airport so happy! Passengers are usually sleepy or bored at the gate and would not even acknowledge crewmembers when they arrive. (If at all, they would have a sigh of relief, having waited so patiently and say to themselves, “At long last, we’re leaving.”)
Why were they happy? Because they are going home.
In this trying times, people are merely predicting the peak of infection in high hopes of seeing the rate of new cases and deaths drop, instead of the exponential increase of figures everyday.
A crewmember once asked in the briefing, “When is the end date to this corona?” Her naivety is funny, as if there’s a known expiry date to it but in reality, aren’t we asking the same question in the backs of our minds every single day? We say it out loud sometimes, as if the Infinite Intelligence would respond this time, after hearing people ask the same question again and again.
Even Nostradamus was not able to foresee it; let alone any seer to speak about the end of any prediction they have.
We are only here to wait patiently like passengers at the gate, try our best to make the most of our waiting time, instead of feeling bored or sleepy and acknowledge the face of God with enthusiasm when He arrives.
“Attention all passengers. This is the pre-boarding announcement for Flight 123 to Manila. We are now inviting passengers requiring special assistance, to begin boarding at this time. Please have your boarding pass and identification ready. Regular boarding will begin in approximately ten minutes time. Thank you.”
Angels in the Sky
The short video not only brought tears to my eyes and touched my heart; it has changed my perspective drastically. In the past days, I used to say, “Flight crew and cabin crew should stop flying. It’s not safe for them,” pertaining to my colleagues who I think go to the battleground as they operate flights. But the video changed all that. Instead of seeing crew as among those I sympathize and pray for (like any frontliner or those badly affected by the pandemic), they’ve become heroes. They’re angels in the sky.
They’re taking people home.
They sacrifice going back to their home (wherever it may be in this world) in order to take people home. They sacrifice the comfort of having loved ones around, in order to help those who would like to be with theirs. They sacrifice their health and lives, because they know of this noble purpose and choose to fulfill it.
They represent millions of OFWs (Oversees Filipino Workers) who chose to live a life away from home, in order to achieve their dreams for their family and community.
Aren’t they the face of God in this world?
Perhaps when we try to find the meaning of life, we’ll realize that we can only find it by serving others. And maybe, we can model our lives to those on the frontline who sacrifice comfort, risk their lives, serve their brethren and wear their courage hats, in order to help and make a difference in this world.
Hats off to all frontliners and modern-day heroes!
“Courage is not the absence of fear, but rather the assessment that something else is more important than fear.” – Franklin D. Roosevelt