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I happened to look out the window an hour or so ago, and I saw that half of the sky was turning different shades of pink, while the other half was already a deep, dark blue, as the night was advancing.

It just struck me that I barely distinguish between sunrise and sunset these days. I observe both, and it is just something that happens. It does not indicate a certain time to me or mean much, other than that the lighting is different. Last night, as I looked out of my window before falling asleep, I saw that the sky was already rapidly lightening and I heard birds beginning to sing their morning songs. One night, as I was ready to allow sleep to overcome me, a sound pierced the silence of the night. Chirp, chirp. As the bird's voice broadcasted loudly into my room, I thought to myself, "Oh no, you have got to be kidding. Please don't do this now." Seriously, those birds start being vocal as early as 5 AM.

It has been this way since Motzei Shabbat, and despite my attempts to change this schedule, it seems to be stubbornly fixed into place for now. (We will see what effect Israel and the different time zones will have on this.)

There is something about nighttime that I have always loved. It seems to bring out my creativity, and it intensifies all of my thoughts and emotions, which translates wonderfully into writing. I remember when I was fourteen, and I was working on my first book, I stayed up every night past 3 AM and wrote pages and pages, because that was just when the inspiration seemed to come to me. And the past few nights have been no exception. I have many pages of writing to show for this past week, and most of it was the result of a sudden urge to express something I was feeling. I actually quite like some of the poetry that has come from these sleepless nights.

Thoughts just strike me, like lightning, and they remain impressed on my mind until I give them an outlet and write them down. When ideas come to me, I feel as though I cannot just ignore them, even if is what I would normally do during the daytime. At night, they somehow feel more significant, and I feel I must record them. So I got into the habit of keeping a notebook next to my bed, and whenever the urge strikes me, I pick it up and begin to write in the darkness, completely missing the lines and unable to dot my i's and cross my t's. But it works.

This actually reminds me of some Phantom of the Opera lyrics....
"Nighttime sharpens, heightens each sensation
Darkness stirs and wakes imagination."

Last night, as I was trying (in vain) to fall asleep, I heard an airplane or a helicopter flying somewhere in the distance. And... it made me think (no surprise there).

I have only been on an airplane four times in my life -- to and from Israel (when I was four and was completely traumatized by the experience), and to and from California (a couple of years ago). One of the most fascinating parts of the California vacation, for me, was the plane trip. I just loved looking down and seeing these mini-towns below me, almost like doll cities. On our red-eye flight back to New York, I saw the lights of Los Angeles twinkling below us amidst the darkness. It was delightful.

From an airplane, the world below you seems like nothing. The people are too small and too far away to really matter, and when we see that one town below us, its inhabitants seem so insignificant to us. At first, they are mere specks, and then they become invisible, and their houses become mere specks, until finally, the entire town becomes a mere speck from your perspective.

Is it not amazing then that G-d, who sees the entire world below him, all those countless specks, cares about and watches over every single one of us? Although there are millions of us, all these tiny little ants, He still sees us as individuals, and nobody escapes His notice?

This entry was posted on Wednesday, July 15, 2009 at Wednesday, July 15, 2009 and is filed under , , , , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .


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