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belt, wallet, backpack, water bottle, teeny airplane pillow, oxygen supply . . . and him. That’s all I need. That’s it. Even if I die. If you die, you can forego the oxygen and so on. You’ ll just have the shepherd.

Ready for Takeoff After a few runway meditations on Psalm 23, I’m no longer afraid to fly. I look forward to it, cool with either destination—Boston or Heaven, Dublin or Heaven. In the same way, you can look forward to ___________________ (your port of call) or Heaven. When someone sits down next to me with a weak smile and starts fiddling with his seat belt, if he snatches a flight magazine and flips nervously through it without looking at the pages, I sometimes ask sympathetically, “Don’t care for flying?” “Not really,” he’ll say grimly. “I used to be afraid. Now I just plan on dying. You can’t imagine how it helps.”


7/22/08 1:28:2