A Yellow Balloon


Today I was in a meeting on the 26th floor of what used to be the Enron building. I was in a meeting with some pretty serious folks talking about some pretty corporatey stuff. Ten of us in the room and four people joining the meeting via conference call and some online collaborative tool. I was talking through a presentation and guiding the team through a series of questions to refine the content when a yellow balloon floated by the window. It floated between our building and the building right next door. I stumbled over my words and was grateful when a conversation started without me at the table for a moment so I could watch the balloon drift by. I was the only one who saw it…at least the only one in our room. It occurs to me now to wonder how many people saw it in other offices in either building as it drifted up between us.

It was like something in a movie. I could see the balloon and the reflection of the balloon in the glass in the opposite building. Everything all glass and steel around us, except for that balloon. It was beautiful.

I wish I worked in the kind of world where I could have stopped the meeting, stood up and shouted “Oh My God! Look! How cool!” But I don’t. I am respected for what I do, but what I do is not considered to be very important in the big scheme of things. In fact, it is considered to be a little “touchy feely” by many. One moment of “Lookie lookie! A balloon!” could totally seal the deal on that. So I sat, grateful for the chair I had chosen at the table, relieved I was able to resist jumping to my feet with excitement and thrilled to have had the opportunity to see a yellow balloon floating by on this very serious day.

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