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Sonic Serendipity

June 30, 2010

  I had a moment today.  One of those ones that captivates you completely and promises to haunt you for years to come.  Not to mention that mine happened at 30,000 feet.

Flying home earlier this afternoon, our plane took us over the Rocky Mountains, an experience I’d recommend to anyone who wants some perspective on how grand the world we live in is, and how miniscule we are in comparison.  Me?  I was blissfully lost in the daydream of it all, oblivious to the roar of the airplane engines attempting to assault my auditory sensitivities, happily cocooned in the memories of a great vacation, taking in the towering landscape thousands of feet below me.

Thankfully, I’ve got decent headphones I bought for traveling, so there wasn’t a lot of outside noise distracting me, but it still took a few minutes for my ears to fully tune into the moment that was unfolding.  My iPod had shuffled to Jóhann Jóhannsson’s piece, “Part 1/IBM 1401 (Processing Unit)” – his music, as I’ve mentioned in an earlier post, is something I’m drawn back to again and again and again – and with me gazing out the window of seat 10F, it synchronized into a perfect soundtrack as we soared over the majestic expanse of peaks and valleys.

The piece builds and builds from its unintrusive beginnings, finally bursting into a shimmering beauty that had me misty-eyed with gape-mouthed wonder.  I wish my words could do the experience justice, but let me just say that Heaven couldn’t have been any closer than at that moment.  It was glory.

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