I walked up to the observation deck, wondering what there was to see. The conveyor for baggage claim was broken, so I knew there would be a few minutes to spare. As I entered the darkened room, I was surprised to see someone else already there. He stood off to the side, looking out the window. As I approached, I saw that there was a small plane beginning to pull away from the building.
I walked up to the window, keeping a respectful distance. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him lean forward and rest his forehead against the glass. He thought better and quickly leaned back. He continued to stare outwards. I did the same.
The plane quickly went behind the building and drove out of sight. We continued to watch anyways, waiting for it to come out onto the runway and take off.
A sense of loss permeated the room.
Minutes passed. Silence stood between us as the rain whipped against the window in the darkness. The light from the lighthouse rhythmically struck the sky.
Twice, he gave up and started to walk away.
Twice, he saw me standing there looking out that window, and turned back to wait it out a little longer.
Out of a sense of duty, I stayed there with him.
Finally, we heard a great roar, and the plane shot into the air in front of us. He pressed his right hand against the glass as the plane hurtled away into the western sky.
He turned and limped away before the flashing lights disappeared into the night.
Below me, I heard the conveyor start to move and luggage drop onto the rotating belt. It was time to go home.