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Friday, February 24, 2012

“Man makes plans, God laughs.” proverb

I woke up filled with excitement.  Today, at last, I was heading to Martha’s Vineyard  to get my fix of salt air, white-capped seas and expanses of untouched sand.  
My son was sick.  This meant a consultation about whether he should go to school, to the doctor, to his art show.  After reaching a compromise, (1/2 day of school, call to the doctor and the art show was mandatory), my son asked for my help in structuring his bio.  The very curriculum vitae that would circulate for job searches, fundraising for films and other money-making ventures.  We worked on it for an hour and a half before it was fine-tuned to our satisfaction.  That was time I had set aside to pay bills before my ride came.  I picked up the pace a little bit.  As I tried to drag my suitcase to the door, I noticed it was unusually resistant.  I noticed the wheel was not turning on one side.  Light bulb!  W-D 40 is what is called for in this kind of situation.  Numerous aggressive squirts did not improve the wheel’s functioning.  I quickly switched all of my belongings to another, slightly smaller suitcase. As I was congratulating myself of my fine packing skills, I noticed the telltale signs of mold growing on the bottom of the suitcase.  The dampness from the basement floor had caused the invasive mold to form. I sent my son to the basement to retrieve MOLD CONTROL.  It is a product that works like a charm to remove mold from both solids and fabrics.  A good rub-down and my bag was mold-free.  
Shortly thereafter, a friend arrived to escort me to my sister’s house.  She and her husband offered me a ride in the van they rented to bring some beds to a rental property.
Prior to arriving at my sister’s house, I had arranged a visit with my father at the Soldier’s Home.  It was curtailed because he was feeling under the weather.  This figure of speech was not just figurative, it was pouring down rain.  My friend and I retreated, regrouped and headed to my sister’s house where the next leg of journey began. I was a little damper and slightly tired.
My sister and I drove about twenty minutes in order to rendezvous with her husband at his place of business.  It was about half way there that my sister mentioned that Jim had difficulty fitting the beds in and I might have to lie on the floor of the van.  Optimally, when I travel, I avoid sitting vertically. Somewhere shy of a 40 degree angle is most comfortable for my joints.  Horizontal is ideal.  I would not object to lying down, it was the thought of lying directly on the metal floor of the van that brought tears to my eyes. 
My sister realized I was upset (actually, I could feel myself hyperventilating), but I said let’s just wait and see what‘s what.    What’s what was worse than I imagined.  There was a about a twenty-four to thirty inch space just behind the driver’s and passenger’s seat.  My brother-in-law had lain down pillows.  
I had just been to the hospital twice over the past week for a joint injury.  The sight of that hidey-hole brought feelings of claustrophobia and real concern about how I might whether a three-hour trip, including a 45 minute ferry ride. I weighed my options.  I was loathe to forgo my trip to the Island, and this was it, my one and only shot for a ride. 
I hemmed and hawed for what seemed like minutes while we stood in the rain.  Then, snap, decision made, I said, “I’ll do it.”  When my brother-in-law suggested that I ”Jump right up,” I fixed my most terrifying gaze upon him. I haven’t jumped in years, I was unlikely to begin today.  The whole, long, uncomfortable ride, I kept my sights fixed on seeing my friend and taking a hot bath when we got settled.  She was there to greet me.  
Her home, a winterized cottage on the Methodist Campgrounds, was beautiful.  A friend of her’s was there to do some work on the bathroom.  He did some last minute adjustments, then she ran a bath for me.  The two of them headed into town for a glass of wine and I prepared to soak in the hot bath I had held so dear on my trip.  In short order I discovered there was only lukewarm water.  It would have felt good on a hot summer day.  On this damp, raw, rainy night, my sore and aching body could not tolerate the chill of it.  I never settled into the tub, rather, I wrapped myself in a towel, then dried off.  I was deeply grateful for my warm pajamas and fuzzy socks.  
The things I must remember,
  1. Life is bound to follow its own course at times.
  2. I am fortunate that I can see the humor in the entire debacle of a day. 
  3. The greatest plans are no better than our ability to adapt to changes in them.
4.  It pays to bring your own pillow when you travel.

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