Sometimes I have moments during which I have the distinct feeling that I could love the entire world. I’m not talking about a hippie kind of we’re-all-connected-I-have-love-in-my-heart-for-everybody thing (although I mean that, too). I mean that I think I could fall in love with every single person I meet. How to explain this?
I know it’s probably sounding like a drug-induced sort of feeling, but it’s not. It’s actually usually a music-induced thing…live music in particular. I remember watching all the listeners and dancers at the Salsa stage during the jazz festival a few weeks ago and thinking to myself that this was the most beautiful group of individuals that had ever been gathered in one place. The thing is that it’s the most beautiful group of people EVERY SINGLE TIME, no matter who the people are, what kind of music it is, or where it’s all taking place. So, that said, I think it must have to do with the joy to be found in watching people let go and allow themselves the pleasure of abandon (“Let your mind go and your body will follow”).
I was trying to describe the feeling to my friend while we watched the salsa dancers. It’s like the music and the dancing reaches a sort of fevered frenzy, and when I look around it seems that every movement, every smile, the little beads of sweat forming on the surface of somebody’s sun-browned arm – it’s all frozen in time – little snapshots of euphoria, and there’s me standing or dancing nearby, trying to soak it all in and remember every single detail for future reference.
It’s at those moments when all I can see are awe-inspiring scenes everywhere, in every direction I turn: ‘that man has eyes a color that strikes me to my very soul.’ ‘the way that woman moves in her hip-hugging skirt and midriff top makes me feel like, if I touched her (even just accidentally brushed against her briefly), I would melt at her feet.’ Thoughts like these go through my head, and I find myself wishing against all hope that the music would never end and that there were, indeed, time enough in one person’s life to love everybody up close. I want to hear all their stories. I want to know them all and touch them all and be invited to their families’ houses for Thanksgiving. I want to read their diaries and look at their bookshelves and ask them all about their third grade teachers. I want to know what they’re most afraid of, and if it’s something of this world I want to go out and conquer it with them. “Sky diving? Let’s go next Saturday…we’ll have ‘em drop us somewhere over the Salinas Valley and we’ll see the amazing hills that Steinbeck spoke of, only as birds do, instead of humans.”
I think this all sounds kind of selfish…me here, wanting it all. But it’s just that there is so much to love out there, and what seems like an unfair amount of time in which to love it. If the universal waitress asked me what I was having, I'd answer that I wanted seven courses of life and an extra side of childhood (for good measure), plus a glass full of water from the Fountain of Youth to drink.
Somehow, though, I know I'd still be hungry.