Get over the what-ifs and OMG's and stuff.
Friday, May 29, 2009
Get over the what-ifs and OMG's and stuff.
Friday, May 22, 2009
Time passed, Mary left the company and divorced, her children grew up, as did mine, and she remarried and moved to Alberta. We lost touch.
Tonight, my youngest child crashed his car. He was driving the car that we had helped him buy less than 2 weeks ago. We did "all the right things" - didn't push him to drive when he was 16, but let him wait until he was more ready at 18. We then put him in the most well-respected, comprehensive driving school we could find. He passed his driver's test the first time, and when I got over my initial shock I grew to see that he was a careful driver. We waited until he had a good job, and could afford gas and car insurance, and then we bought the car early for him with the understanding that he would pay back half the cost.
He had been driving down a very quiet rural road, with a friend in the passenger seat, when a rabbit darted in front of the car. He swerved, over corrected, and lost control. The car glanced off a couple of trees, entered a 3-foot ditch, and half-climbed out again. The airbags that I had insisted on were deployed, and both boys, who were wearing seat belts, got a good dose of airbag dust, got shaken up, but were otherwise unharmed.
I drove to the accident site after he called us, and angrily wondered if he had been goofing off, speeding, and/or making up the rabbit story. When my husband, who got there before me, told me that the car was probably totalled, I further wondered if we were going to make him continue to pay us back the half that we had agreed to, or if my husband (the softy) would just let him off the hook. I wondered if my boy had learned a lesson, and I wondered if my husband was going to rush to buy him another car so that he wouldn't have to be "inconvenienced". (I can do a lot of agitated thinking when my adrenaline is going).
Then I remembered my old friend Mary. A few days ago I found out from another friend that Mary's son Mike died unexpectedly last week. He took his own life, and no one saw it coming. He was a few weeks short of 25 years old. He left behind a young wife, his siblings, his friends, his parents and grandparents. Mary, of course, is devastated.
....and now my thoughts are wrapped up in comparing the two situations; I have my son, and Mary does not have hers. I can hug my son, and Mary will never hug hers again.
I don't think I will ever fully comprehend Mary's situation, except for the fact that Mary would probably give anything to switch places with me. I don't know who, if anyone, is in charge of life or death. Are people "chosen", or is it random? Even if I did believe that some"one" was in charge, I would still be asking WHY? Why this child and not that child? The "works in mysterious ways" answer would not satisfy me. Why was some"one" not watching out for that child in his darkest hour? Why was the suicide attempt successful? I know, I know - free will.
But why was that child's momentary expression of free will so devastating while my child's was not? I could go on and on with this.
But I am lucky; life for me and my family will go back to normal within a few days, while Mary will continue to ask "why?" for the rest of her life.
Hug your boys, hug your girls, hug whoever you love as often as possible.
Saturday, May 16, 2009
Exhibit 5: Part of my cake is missing. At least, more is missing than was when I went to bed
Finally, one of my favourites, Bleeding Hearts, or Dutchman's Breeches, or Dicentra...or whatever you want to call it. Another shade-lover.
Not much else in my very shady garden, except weeds. So I'll leave it at that for now.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
Friday, May 8, 2009
This is a shot of MY view of the front counter. Acting as customer is Bob, our mechanic. We love Bob. At any rate, you can see that the counter is rather, um, crowded. Computer, printer, phone, bank machine pinpad, parts, tools, papers, catalogs, pens, rolodex, junk, and more parts and more junk.
The customers barely have a spot to sign their credit card slips. Even if I clean it off, it's like this again the next day.
Here's a shot of the front counter from the customer's perspective. This is how we greet our valuable customers. Obstacle course, mess, sarcasm. They have a tiny spot to stand on, between parts and boxes of parts. They have rude and insulting messages to read, while they wait. I try to make up for it all by babbling away at them like the idiot I am. Oddly enough, most customers enjoy the messages written on the front counter. One guy read them and said he'd never be back, though. This was after he'd gotten excellent service and a good price on the part he needed. Some people are....sensitive. This is not the place for them.
I don't have a lot of say about the decor here. This is my husband's gig and I am just here to help. And help I do. I cringe, I hide, I apologise, I run around, I suck it in, I suck up, I smile, I chat. I make excuses for my husband's "brusque" manner. I explain about the broken bones, pain, wrecked knees, stress, economy, and why we can't afford to hire more employees. Urk.
Most people are fairly understanding and continue to come back to us. Some even appreciate the "honest" atmosphere. Nothing like a dose of brutal honesty to put a spark in one's day!
I'd better get back to work,
Kathryn : )