I mean, like when you are just going about your everyday business and then, WHAM! What you thought was happening, isn't really happening anymore? You know, it becomes a blip in the program-- a quark in the universe--a WOOOOW moment that steals your breath away and you are, in an instant, transported into some kind of a parallel universe?
It happened to me just this week while acting as an unofficial tour guide through Germany into Austria with my Austrailian mother-in-law. Truly, it was an experience I will never forget for as long as I live and one that will surely linger in my memory forever.
It all began after a whirlwind tour of Vienna, Austria. We had spent two amazing evenings enjoying dinner out and a Mozart concert one evening, and a Beethoven concert the next. Another day was spent at the Albertina studying the brushstrokes of the Masters. Rembrandt, Matisse, Monet, Manet, Renoir, Degas, Klimt, Munch, Picasso, and on and on, ad infinitum. One could have spent weeks exploring this mammoth museum, we spent one day packing it ALL in.
However, I found that not one of these, "once in a lifetime, " experiences could match what was about to come.
Remember when I said that, "I was stolen away to another dimension," or something like that? Surely enough, it began as Jaci (my mother-in-law) and I were descending the down escalator to the U-2 (subway) in central Vienna after nine hours of sight-seeing (on foot, mind you).
Jaci entered the escalator first, and I followed a few stairs behind her. About three-quarters of the way down the escalator, we began to hear the faint sounds of the "Weiner Walzer," or better known in English as the Viennese Waltz. The music was being piped in to the underground subway from speakers overhead.
Once off the escalator and back on terra firma, my 78 year old mother-in-law starts to regress into a child-like waif and the next thing I know she is flitting from side to side with an imaginary partner waltzing her way through the hustle and bustle of people that make up the underground in a large city like Vienna.
I am just a few steps behind her, still waiting for MY descent from the escalator when a man rushes hurriedly along beside me and jumps off the escalator only a step or two in front of me. I blinked my eyes to discover that his reason for rushing past me was to mimic my (did I say 78 years old? Strike that, young) mother-in-law.
Now, he is precisely behind her and at this very moment she is unaware that he is shadowing her every dance move. Now, I wish you were with me at the moment she turned around. You would have loved to have seen the look on her face when she twirled about, while still gliding to and fro to the music in time to discover a dashing (handsome?) man imitating her dance steps!
I can tell you, it was priceless--that look, it was. But that wasn't what transported me--not yet, anyways.
In one fell swoop, he took her in his arms and swept her off her feet (literally) to the strains of Johann Strauss. Reminiscent of an episode of "Dancing With the Stars," I envisioned Bruno Tonioli's face in distinct shock as I witnessed the couple rotating first clockwise, and then counter-clockwise, to the tempo of the great Viennese Waltz.
Glimpsing out of the corner of my eye, around the underground, I saw a crowd swiftly gathering in a large circle. Every face was now grinning from ear to ear. It was all I could do to grab my camera and click away before the moment was gone.
I tell you, it was so surreal, so impromptu, so passionate, these two star-crossed dancers, that you just had to see it to believe it!
And now, you can....
The "Waltzing" stranger in the middle of Vienna's underground swooping my mother-in-law off her feet!
Another shot of the dashing fellow, smiling for the camera, as he whisks her away.
I tell you, she could of laid that old white hat on the floor and she and I could have spent another whole week in Vienna with the crowd that gathered as they danced blissfully unaware of everyones' amazement and delight.
And then, like Antonio Banderas in "Zorro," he bowed at the waist and dissapeared.....