There are these moments, the best way I can describe them is transcendental, but that doesn't quite cover it. It's like it happens, and then when it's over you look around and see that the world is still turning and no one else noticed this thing that affected you so viscerally. And eventually (it doesn't take long) you just go back to doing whatever you were doing until the next moment comes along.
I had one when I opened the mailbox to my UNC acceptance letter. When I stepped on the grass at Enron Field that first time in February. When the aforemented NSG ran his finger across the palm of my hand and...oh.
Of course there are more common ones: when you leave the hospital with your new baby. (Or without -- but we're talking about the good ones here.) When you go see Riverdance and you actually have to push your jaw closed because they can't possibly be tapping that fast except THEY ARE. And then there's the Bryan Adams concert. (Haaaaa.)
So I went to the Bryan Adams concert last Saturday. The 30th anniversary "Reckless" tour. Thirty years ago Saturday, I was ... nearly 5. And listening to Jim Nabors singing about how you can't roller skate in a buffalo herd. But if you don't love a good Bryan Adams ballad, we probably can't be friends. (I might make an exception if I really like you.) Anyway I wasn't super familiar with the first half of the concert, is what I'm saying. It rained Saturday afternoon, and the concert was delayed (even though it SAID rain or shine), and suddenly the lights came up and there was Bryan Adams, no preamble, and everybody stood up and then ... sort of fidgeted because the only person who knew these songs was the lady in the striped shirt who was swaying back and forth four rows in front of me. But then he did "Heaven" and everyone sang along and he yelled, "I love it when you sing" and I thought, oh, I hate it when people sing and the performer turns the mic on the crowd, it's why I don't buy concert CDs (okay, well, if I still bought CDs but you know what I mean). This is probably in large part because I cannot sing. At all. It is terrible.
Anyway, after the Reckless part of the concert, he started doing favorites and so everyone could and did sing along and thankfully he only really turned the mic on the crowd very occasionally. And, I mean, I'm not an avid concert-goer so I don't often go sing at the top of my lungs in public -- certainly I've belted out FINS TO THE LEFT FINS TO THE RIGHT at Jimmy Buffett -- but there was something very freeing about it. Dare I say ... transcendental. And then sometime during the encore (I think) Bryan -- can I call him Bryan -- said something like, "You know I told you earlier I love it when you sing and I meant that. For so many people to come together like this ... it makes magic." And it was so cheesy but so true. It really was magic.