So then maybe this is an example of our collective numbness, an example of how easily distracted and self-involved we can be. Those ladies taking selfies—they represent all of us, don't they? Taking pictures of ourselves while tragedy unfolds around us?
Or perhaps we can see it as a metaphor for impermanence, and the need to live life to the fullest, because you never know what day is your last.
And most of us live as if we had all the time in the world when the truth is, we do not.
There's a part of me that doesn't want to draw out lessons about Mankind from that night in Johannesburg, no matter how true they might be.
Because it wasn't mankind—but one man—who died that night. One man who had a story of his own, who is more than the ideas we may draw. One man in the crowd who was someone.
I wish that, before we boarded, we had stopped what we were doing—all of us, together, strangers, but not strangers—and been present with him, to honor his life and the fact that we were a part of it for a short time.