I have two stories today…actually three that blend into four.

1- Saturday night I was in a particularly ornery mood and bless JJ’s heart he convinced me that riding bikes to the American Legion’s “Blues on the Bay” concert would be an okay thing to do. The cover was $25, but he said he could sneak us in. He loves being local and showing me the ropes. Skeptical that we could get in for free and that I would be able to leave my sour disposition at the door, it was a whiney ride. Once I started moving and breathing in the ocean air, the black cloud over my head dissipated along with the blackness that shelled my cold heart (he he). We did, in fact, get in for free. Since I didn’t have ID on me, my no-charge wrist band was light blue with dolphins jumping across it. (People’s reactions are funny when you tell them that you’re not drinking anyway.) The band was hopping and so were the attendees. The dance floor was packed. It seriously doesn’t take much to turn my frowns upside down. At first we sat to listen and this older gentleman in flip-flops, shorts, a WT tank top, trucker hat, white goatee—clearly toasted—pointed at me and motioned me to come to him. Yeah Right. I pointed at JJ with a look of disbelief on my face and then to the handful of single ladies sitting around us. He picked one who danced oh so very close to him. I am not endorsing alcohol consumption—it’s just really fun to be on a dance floor with people who are making fools of themselves and don’t give a hoot if you make a fool of yourself too. I love it. And I love that JJ will make a fool of himself with me. After the AL, we rode down to the Wedge. What a gorgeous night! Midnight blue skies and a nearly full moon lighting up a black ocean. See poem to the right.

2- Sunday morning, I was in the garage for something and I heard this whimpering. Weird. I continued working on my project and the whimpering continued, “mom…help me… mom… I can’t…” The house behind ours, separated only by a one-car wide alley, is a vacation rental and every week hosts different occupants. It’s a 4-bedroom, so it usually sees extended families. Well, my curiosity mixed with innate mothering instincts drove me to check into it. I walked over to the 6 foot, brown wooden plank fence and asked the whimpering voice if he was okay. “yes, I’m okay…but I can’t get…” I tried to peer in, but couldn’t see much. “do you need help?” I asked. “Yes, I need help.” “But you’re okay?” “yes, I’m okay.” I was trying to assess the seriousness of the situation. Did I need to intervene? Were they restraining their kid in a high chair with duct tape like I had seen a couple weeks ago on a video at school about the foster care system? Finally I asked, “Are you stuck?” and he said yes. So I tried to open the gate and he guided me to the “right gate” to open and there he was, this cute, blonde headed, probably 4-year-old boy with his arm trapped under the lid of a fiberglass storage bin. I lifted the lid and could barely heave it up enough for him to get out. How in the world did he open it enough to get stuck? Then I had to open it long enough for him to pull out one of the toys inside. I asked him if he was okay and then requested that he not try to get anymore toys without a grown up and he ran inside. I walked out of the gate and closed it and thought to myself, “His mom has no idea. I am a hero.” And then I lost all blessings due to my pride.

3- I’ll summarize this one. Today I finally applied for a California driver’s license. On my way to the DMV, this big, red, WT truck pulled out in front of me so that I had to slam on my breaks. I honked my horn and swerved around him. As I passed him, he let out a string of expletives at the top of his lungs, including calling me a really bad name and said that he could #$*&#@* run me over—which is true. He could have run me over. That’s the part I could make out, cause I rolled up my windows as fast as they would go. Argh. Someday, those kind of things will not affect me and I will not react in an unsafe manner. All I could think to do was say a prayer of gratitude that I do not have people like that in my life and run across them infrequently.

4- Which reminds me of story #4: A couple weeks ago, another guy yelled at me for “talking on my cell phone while driving” and I wasn’t even talking on my phone!! Ridiculous. He told me that he had been hit by a lady talking on her phone to which I said, “I’m sorry, but it wasn’t me.” I also said, “Are you kidding me?” and I wanted to say, “Your kids (he was in the passenger seat and had three teenage girls in the back) must be so embarrassed by you.” But, again—all I can do is say a big “THANK YOU” to the positive and uplifting people in my life.


Keepin' up with the Jones' said...

great stories charity. My sister had an experience similar to your #4 one just yesterday so yours made me laugh.

I'm glad I have positive people in my life as well. I'm glad you have found a guy that treats you well and that likes to have fun with you. You deserve the best.

Kit Kartchner said...

Love your insightful sharing.

These are the moments that test that free agency we fought over, chose, and then celebrated in the world before this one.

We get to choose how we are going to feel; how long we are going to feel it, and if we want to feel happy or frustrated.

We can reframe it: God is perfect.
The world He designed for us is perfect.
Therefore, what just happened, though it may have thrown us off guard, is perfect.
Perfectly designed to give us just one more opportunity to be enticed into misery or joy, for however many moments we want!

Love you!