The story of the 4 blue blankets…
In a time long, long ago. In a land far off. A mystical land called Washington DC, there was a girl named Teneil. She was flying around the world on a journey she did not know. To a place she had not been. Because she did not know much about where she was going, she packed like a true American woman. EVERYTHING! The first leg of the journey, from Denver to Washington DC, was the easy. The plane was nice and the people pleasing! The crew noticed how I waited until everyone was off the plane before I started to gather my 50lb carryon and my 34lb “purse”, plus a 3ft Mary Poppins umbrella (raining season of course). 3 crew members watched as I lugged my haul. Then they asked where I was headed.
“I’m going to Malawi, Africa. I don’t know for how long. I’m not really sure what is going to happen. I want to go to online seminary, but I dont know how long, so I just put everything in storage and packed all I could carry. I know I can go to school here, but I have never felt the presence of God anywhere like I do in Malawi. So if I was going to go to school to learn about him, I should go where I know he is with me.”
“When do you leave and from what gate? We can help you carry your things?” The 3 attendents state.
“I’m not flying out for 10 hours, I really just need to find a quite place to sleep.”
I told them my gate number and they all agreed it was a bad idea to sleep there. “That gate isn’t heated, in fact, THIS is the only gate that is! You should sleep here and go to your gate in the morning!”
Looking around for a place to sleep I noticed everyone working had jackets on… It was heated?? The other gate must be fridged.
“Good plan” I said. That is when one of the attendants went behind a both, grabbed 4 small blue delta airline blankets and handed them to me. “Keep these, they are clean. I hope they bless you.” We huged and they went on there way.
The 4 blue blankets remained.
I found a dark corner and hunkered down. 2 blankets below, 2 above. Quite nice in fact. I drifted off in a way I didn’t think I could, nice and warm, with my limbs tangled in my luggage.
Then I heard her. A squealing child, about 3 years old. Clearly way too tired! Coming my way? No surly not… They can see me right? A single traveler, sleeping well? “Go to the other side of the room!” I screamed in my head! But no. Alas, they camped in what they assumed was the sleeping section.
“I’m so sorry”, the mother said, in a sweet southern accent. “Can we please sleep next to you?” I was humbled… “Of course, please, there is strength in numbers! No-one will rob me if they think you are my family!”, I smiled.
I rolled back over and tried to sleep, but this little girl was having a fit. “I cant sleep without my PAJAMAS!!” I popped up and said, “ME NEITHER! That’s why when I travel I ALWAYS bring at least 4 pajama blankets! It’s like a pajama but you wear it over your cloths!” She giggled and took one of the little blue blankets.
3 blue blankets remained.
After the sun came up, and the family was long gone, I deliberated in leaving the 3 blankets. I deliberated harder after lugging the extra through the Ethiopian airport, and again after having my bag finally broke under the extra pressure.
I folded the 3 onto my shelf and wondered if it was worth the effort!
Soon after I ran out of bandages I was greatful for the soft thin fabric. One straight cut and an arm sling was created. Another slice and a head was wound was sedated. The last scrap was used to help support a wound on a man’s hand.
2 blue blankets remained.
The rains came in, the cold wind too. My house is a shelter for forgotten children after school. We make hot apple cider and eat cookies under the blankets, while coloring and the storm raging on outside. One child confides, he doesn’t have a blanket at home. This blue one is so soft and just his size.
1 blanket remains.
This one I keep. It’s where my puppies sleep. To remind me of the blessings small kindness preach. How one person’s thought to give a cold woman blankets grew to bless so many. Thanks delta crew! I wish there were more like you!
The story of the 4 blue blankets…