“Whenever I get gloomy with the state of the world, I think about the arrivals gate at Heathrow Airport. General opinion’s starting to make out that we live in a world of hatred and greed, but I don’t see that. It seems to me that love is everywhere. Often, it’s not particularly dignified or newsworthy, but it’s always there – fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends. When the planes hit the Twin Towers, as far as I know, none of the phone calls from the people on board were messages of hate or revenge – they were all messages of love. If you look for it, I’ve got a sneaking suspicion… love actually is all around.” – Love Actually, 2003
Airports, are for me a place where mixed emotions are truly overflowing. There’s sadness that accompanies goodbyes between friends, parents and children, boyfriends and girlfriends even a dog and its owner. There’s longing that you can sense from a mother waiting for his son to come back to her arms, to embrace him. The excitement of a young wife seeing his husband again from perhaps a week of separation. The “welcome home” sign waved as the person awaited for approaches is a scene that always brings a smile to me.
Of all the welcomes, that between a father and his kids is what I am truly familiar with. I had my share of sending offs and picking ups from the airport when I was a kid. It was never a fond memory saying goodbye to my Dad, counting the years and days and later on I’d be back at the airport with the whole family to pick him up. This time, excited and happy until he waved to us, luggage behind, finally coming home after years of being away in a distant city.
It was the same excitement I felt, the same eagerness I had then, seeing the kids wait for their Dad to come out from the big door. They were giddy, counting every second and when Daddy finally did came out…they came to him and hugged him tightly. That’s love, pure and true…airports got them everyday.