Because I was Late

Oh I had my excuses- I had to find my keys, I got stuck talking to people- but mostly it was just a slow morning & I just didn’t feel any need or desire to rush.  I didn’t hop on my bike until I’d normally already be at work but I didn’t worry too much about that; I just enjoyed the ride.

About halfway there I spotted a woman on the road ahead who had dropped her groceries. “Do you need help?” I called out.

“Yes, please.” She answered. So I paused and bent to pick up her bags that seeped creamy iced coffee from broken bottles. Blood poured from her clenched hand. So pragmatically, I sent her inside to wash it off. Her neighbor came across the street to help so I delegated the bag carrying to him while I parked my bike in her open garage. That sweet man brought in her trashcan while he was at it and then offered to take her to the hospital. It was a good thing too cause I don’t think she was quite feeling up to riding on my handlebars.

While we waited for her neighbor to grab his car, she had me fetch her phone from the back room of her house so she could call the people who were supposed to come cut her trees and tell them that they could still come; she just wouldn’t be there.

“I’m shaking,” she said when she hung up.

“Of course you are, you’re in shock.” I replied and made her drink some water.

“How can I ever repay you?”

“You can’t. Pay it forward.”

When she finally climbed into her neighbor’s car, she gave me a hug  and called me an angel. And you know, that’s all I’ve ever wanted to be.

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Bicycle Problems

The first day on the job, I decided to ride my bike because the bus doesn’t get very close to my work. A couple blocks from home the gears decided not to shift so I rode in a circle, messing with them and singing “Bike don’t fail me now. Time do not betray me,” until I decided I didn’t have time for this and turned towards home, hoping someone could give me a ride.

“Miss. Do you need help with your bike?”

“Yes! Please.” I stopped and backed up and met a new friend who lent the extra hands I needed to manually shift the gears. Then I was off, and still beat my supervisor to work.

Daddy Always Said

I don’t remember why they left me at home alone. Just that they did. & that I was FURIOUS about it. & a little scared. I lit a couple candles just in case the electricity went out. Then I blew them out because that was stupid & stormed upstairs to my room.

There was a giant crash.

& just like in a horror movie, I went to investigate. There was no sign of forced entry, no open doors or windows, & no burglars or serial killers in sight. Not even any cereal killers. But the oven door— had shattered into shards across the floor. I touched a shard. It was cool. I wasn’t. I was freaking out. I didn’t know what to do & it was before cellphones so I couldn’t even call my parents.

I was alone.

Just then- the phone rang.

It was my gramma & her voice was exactly what I needed to hear.

All these years later, we still don’t know what happened. But then, Daddy always said I had a bogart. & Mom always said I had angels.

via Daily Prompt: Gremlins

Soundtrack

I was starving. But running late, as per usual. But that’s what microwaves and eating in the car is for, so I was good…. until my bowl landed face first on the floor. The radio seemed to mock me as it sang “‘What if I fall? ‘I’ll never let you fall’ ‘What if I cry?'” At that point, I wanted to cry.

Step Out of the Boat

Sometimes, fear controls me. The world is big and scary. And I? I am just a little girl really. Nobody. While at other times I feel as though my faith can move mountains and I’m completely unstoppable, at these times, it takes all I have just to step out of the boat. But David A Bednar, a modern day apostle of God, once said that that’s all it takes. Because Christ is there to catch me.

The story I’m referencing can be seen here—  https://www.lds.org/media-library/video/2014-01-024-wherefore-didst-thou-doubt?&cld=HP_TH_18-5-2017_dPFD_fMLIB_xLIDyL1-A_&lang=eng

 

My victory speech is hopefully not too soon….

When the ants declared a holy war, I informed them that they could march around the house blowing their trumpets as many times as they wanted, but God, and the vacuum, are on my side and they WILL NOT CONQUER.

Indeed, the body count was high, with casualties including a plate of once delectable brownies and a bag of my good friend’s homemade bread. But with a persistent offensive and the change in weather, the ants seem to have given up and moved their search for the promised land to greener pastures.

*I apologize that there is no documentation of the most intense moments of battle, but when faced with the options of grabbing my camera or shouting “DIE YE FIENDS OF THE INFERNAL PIT” and charging into the fray, I chose the latter and my efforts were rewarded. Poor sweet Ricky was the only ant I was able to locate when campaigning for models.

***Many ants were harmed and killed in the making of this post

 

Good Fences 

About 22 years ago, my family moved to Illinois. When our backyard neighbor introduced himself he said “Good fences make good neighbors.” Mr. Trump would agree with that statement, but I’m not sure how he’d like the rest of the story…..

Our neighbors had a tall, beautiful fence that still didn’t keep us from reaching through & stealing strawberries or throwing rocks over the top of it, just for fun. One day, one of our neighbor’s sons thought their house was on fire (it wasn’t) so my pregnant mother hopped that fence with a step stool. The very next week, our neighbor cut a gate into that fence & over the years we wore a path through the grass.

They became the best neighbors we’ve ever had. Of course, I might be biased; I married their youngest son.

Tracing Lines

Do you ever sit and trace back? Back to when you were 15 at a church dance, feeling pretty in a turquoise, circle skirt, dancing with a boy whose grandparents you happened to have known quite well? Later, he held the door for you and got your email. Emails turned to phone calls, phone calls became visits, and you became friends. He was your best friend, and then your boyfriend. Then he went on a mission and emails and phone calls and visits became letters. But two years was a long time and when he came back you were different. You didn’t date again. And he got married.

But during the time when you’d been friends, he introduced your little brother to the Hill Cumourah Pageant and your brother never forgot it. He insisted that your family be in it. So you were and you all loved it. You loved it so much that you were in it again. Your brother teased that there you would meet your future spouse. But despite making good friends, amazing friends, you weren’t interested in a long distance relationship. You’d done that twice already. But your brother’s prediction made you question, ‘why was it that you hated long distance relationships so much?’ ……Because they made you miss out on what was around you. Right in front of you……And that made you ask ‘What would you miss out on?’

The answer was there. Right in front of you. Your pretend big brother. Your neighbor. The one you’d known since you were two. The one to whom you’re now engaged. Maybe you would have come to your senses if life had drawn different lines to trace…..but maybe not.

…..You don’t remember all this? I do. My little sister still has that skirt.

I feel like Robert Frost

I wanted to apologize if my last post made you worry, I didn’t mean it to, so I’m sorry.

I guess it’s kind of like “The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost. I found an article the other day that claimed it wasn’t written as “a clarion call to venture off the beaten path” but as a joke (Robinson).

Imagine this as you read the poem. Frost and his friend Edward Thomas walking through the woods when they hit a split in the path. Thomas debates each way, trying to figure out which one will be better —-“this one goes north and I know the pond is north, so maybe it will take us there. But this one. This one has fox prints so maybe we’ll see a fox. Foxes are cool. But so are ponds, especially if there are waterfalls. But I don’t know if there are waterfalls, & I don’t know if there’s a fox….”

Finally Frost says ” Just pick one already!!!” So Thomas does. & the entire time he is sure the other one was better. Like a true friend, Frost makes fun of him, & even writes a poem about it. The poem becomes famous, but no one gets it. Not even Thomas at first.

When I read this article, I found it hilarious because suddenly, the poem means the opposite of what we think. Instead of saying ” choose wisely” it’s saying “just choose & be happy with your choice”. I appreciate that message because I often have Thomas’ issue. I convince myself that the outfit I’m wearing somehow has eternal significance when it doesn’t. At all.

So I followed Frost’s lead; I took my issue & I made fun of it, and somehow, I was still surprised when, like Frost, my message was understood a little differently than I meant it….
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,

And sorry I could not travel both

And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could

To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,

And having perhaps the better claim,

Because it was grassy and wanted wear;

Though as for that the passing there

Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay

In leaves no step had trodden black.

Oh, I kept the first for another day!

Yet knowing how way leads on to way,

I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh

Somewhere ages and ages hence:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.

Robinson, Katherine. “Robert Frost:’The Road Not Taken’: Our Choices Are Made Clear in Hindsight”. Poetry Foundation.     https://www.poetryfoundation.org/resources/learning/core-poems/detail/44272#guide

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