Random Acts of "Kindness"

Posts tagged ‘TIMING’

ON THE ROAD

We have a 2001 Ford Taurus. The mileage on the car is approaching 200,000. And our car is showing its age. Recently the low coolant light came on. We were headed for our youngest daughter’s house — 3 hours away. We bought a bottle of coolant at the gas station and proceeded on our way. We were at our daughter’s for a full week but we don’t have a relationship established with a repair garage down there. My husband thought that if we kept adding water, we would be okay. And we were. We even traveled to horse country — another 60 miles away.

Returning from our daughter’s we ran into HORRIBLE TRAFFIC. It was Friday, the Cubs had a game and there was a festival on the lake. It took over an hour, driving in the city, to reach our house. The low coolant light came on during the drive but the car continued to run, the heat register didn’t go into dangerous territory.

We were going to wait until we went out to the camper — 100 miles from home — to have the car fixed but the problem seemed to get worse. We needed a new water pump and a new hose. My husband thought we NEEDED a new car but he wanted to reach 200,000 miles. In spite of a few bumps and wrinkles, our car was in good shape.

We drove our fixed car to North Chicago, to visit a doctor. NO PROBLEMS. The next day my husband drove to get mulch for the back yard. The car was smoking on the return trip. I was at the EL platform, heading downtown to buy a sticker for our car when my husband phoned and told me not to go. I hadn’t brought my house keys with me. Returning home, I saw him cross the alley as I approached our block.

The NEW water pump put too much pressure on the OLD HOSES. More work needed. Hopefully that is all the repairs our car will need for a while. I’m hoping that it will continue to run well for at least a year.

DIRECTED LIFE

Although we have many conveniences at the camper, the internet isn’t one of them. My husband has a hot spot on his phone. I tried to connect to it. Unsuccessful — three times in a row. I gave up and said I was going to the Laundromat. There are a few places at the campground that you can connect to the internet. The Laundromat is one of them.

I put our dog Robin in the car and we went for a drive. There was another car in the lot when I pulled in. Before long the person in the other car tapped on my window. “Can I talk to you?” I rolled down my window. “We are new out here and my friend is in a lot of pain. I don’t know what to do? Should I call for an ambulance.”

I’ll admit that I didn’t know what to say at first. I told him that there was a hospital in the nearer big town but suggested that he go up to the gate. They have Emergency Technicians there and they will be able to advise what to do.

He immediately started his car and headed for the gate. I have no idea what the outcome was for them. I finished hooking up to the internet and headed to our camper. My husband was able to connect his ipad to the hotspot that night. When I told him my story he said I lead an interesting life.

Interesting Life continues. The reading in my Inner Reflections engagement calendar reads this week: “So long as we are on stage in the drama of life. We should play our part to the best of our ability …. We must try to understand the purpose of the drama, and why we have our particular role in it. ” Paramahansa Yogananda.

My reading in Queen of Heaven this morning made me laugh. “I thank God who bumps me and prods me and pushes me.” But this evening, as I prepared to write a couple of thought rambles — I was unable to connect to my external hard drive. I didn’t laugh — I cried! All of my thought rambles were on there. Thankfully I always print a hard copy too.

I just celebrated my fifth year writing on Wandering with Spirit. I don’t think I’m supposed to stop but then who am I?

HEARD ON THE RADIO

I have to admit that I usually only have the radio on when I’m by myself in the car. Ash Wednesday our son was going to O’Hare bright and early in the morning. I offered to drive him to the train station. I brought Robin along to treat here and allow my husband to sleep while I was gone. I didn’t have time to take her for a walk before I left. Robin would have woke him after I was gone.

I seldom drive in morning rush hour anymore. And that morning the traffic was heavy, After I dropped our son off, I turned on the radio. Maybe because the traffic was so slow or not moving, I paid more attention. I heard an advertisement from one of our grocery stores advertising a special, that day only. Buy one package of Gorton fish sticks or fish fillet and get 2 free. Sounded good to me. Lent was starting — fish or meatless on all Fridays and a couple of Wednesdays. Meatless for 8 Fridays. I could use the fish, I didn’t know if I had room in the freezer.

I was tempted to stop at the store before going home. The stop and go traffic gave me time to think. I decided that I needed to take Robin for a walk first. Since we live walking distance from the store I decided to park the car in the garage, take Robin for her walk, then walk to the store. She wouldn’t wake my husband up after going for a walk. She would be too happy to go back to sleep.

Most battered fish is too high in sodium for me. I got a surprise when I read that FIVE fish sticks were only 250 mgs. of sodium. I could eat FIVE. Of course, stopping after 5 would not be easy but I decided I could do it. It had been a long time since I had fish sticks. The fish fillets were not as low in sodium but I bought them too. WHAT WAS I THINKING? FIVE packages that would have to find room in our freezer. I planned to use the fish sticks for supper. I saved $34. So glad I turned on the radio and LISTENED.

THANKS DAD

I have learned that usually I am in the right place — at the right time — to either help someone or be helped in return. Sometimes I notice it more when it is a birthday, or a holiday. It doesn’t matter if the birthday is on this side or on the other. I knew my father’s birthday was approaching. Except when it arrived, I thought it was the next day. OOPS! It was only when I arrived home and looked at the date, I realized my error. and I have to give credit where it is deserved.

We journeyed South to our daughter’s to watch their children and I stopped at Wal-Mart to get some needed supplies. While there — I spotted a lovely dress with a lace over shrug. The price was right, they had the dress in my size but I didn’t have the time to try it on. While at the store I picked up a sleeping aid. A heavy woman was in the same aisle taking advantage of their driving carts. We struck up a conversation and I shared the brands that I have success with. She shared that her arthritis pain often kept her awake at night. It was only after I left the aisle that I remembered an essential oil roll-on that gives me success. Returning to the aisle, I shared more information.

I returned to Wal-Mart a few days later and was surprised to see that they still had the dress in my size. In fact, they had two different colors. This time my husband was with me. He liked the white lace better. Trying them on, they both fit. I’m have a short torso so Junior sizes fit me better. Even if I’m successful and lose weight, the dresses should still fit. My husband thought I should get both of them and for a change I listened.

I picked up a four pack of Merlot to enjoy a glass of wine at night. The check out clerk asked to see my ID. I was THRILLED! Really, I actually look young? (Of course it is the stores policy to check ALL wine and beer sales.) But then the warm feeling spread. When she saw my age she told me that the date must have been wrong — I couldn’t be that old!

When I returned to our daughter’s and saw the date, I knew where those roses came from. “Happy Birthday, Dad. Thanks.”

Our granddaughter’s birthday is in the same week. We stopped at Dairy Queen for lunch before going to a place of amusement. She was wearing a brand new, sparkly shirt and wasn’t at all happy when mustard spilled on the shirt. “Mustard stains!” She was in luck, the woman in the booth behinds us shared her Tide to Go stick. Four hours later when I soaked the shirt in cold water and used soap, most of the stain washed away.

A Tide To Go stick has to be one of my wandering companions.

When “my editors ” approve of what I have written, the thought ramble saves quickly. Today’s delay reminded me that I had EXTRA “HELP” this morning. I planned to go to the store but all of a sudden my tummy started acting up. I realized that I needed to take a time out before going. It was really a good thing that I did. On Sunday, the grocery store was featuring Paczki, a Polish treat only made once a year — before Lent. I bought a box to treat our grandchildren. They liked them so much, I planned to get more today. When I arrived at the store, the table was bare. When I inquired, I learned that they had just finished baking and were being packaged as we spoke. THANK YOU!

ZOO

Sunshine — warm — the day was calling my name. “Don’t stay home — go out and play,” the morning seemed to say. And for a change I listened. Our granddaughter would soon celebrate a birthday and I needed a gift. She LOVES stuffed animals, ALL animals — dogs, cats, snakes, horses to name just a few. I thought a stuffed animal from the zoo would be a great choice. So I asked her what animal we should see for her at the zoo and she replied monkeys.

As a new member of the zoo we qualified for a gift. Hard choice between the tote bags, tee shirts and other items until we saw a child sized tee shirt with a snow monkey on the back. Decision made.

As we entered the zoo, the tiger was commenting on the weather, the sunshine, the warmth, the ??? I approached to share in the conversation and the tiger stopped, yawned, and stretched out for a nap. Hard work — got my attention.

We headed for the gift shop. I found a small stuffed snow monkey, a red fox and a tube of tiny monkeys. Both of the stuffed animals were on sale — making it possible to get more than one. Our granddaughter has had a rough year. Fever, sore throat — too many times. The tube of monkeys would be easy to play with when she was sick. Birthday solved. Since they were zoo animals, I didn’t think she already had them.

Beautiful day — we wandered the zoo. Most of the animals were outside, enjoying the warmth and sun shine, except for the polar bear who had had enough sunshine for the day. A new endangered primate baby had just been born. When we entered the primate house, the proud parents had the baby front and center. Very easy to see and photograph. The rest of the group were very interested in the new arrival. It didn’t take long until the mother moved the baby to a more secluded area. We were lucky to arrive when we did.

We also had good timing when we stopped for a cup of coffee. Because of winter hours the cafe was closing early — in half an hour to be exact. We had time for some hot chocolate and a snack. The zoo wasn’t closing early but we really didn’t want to play in rush hour traffic. We stopped at the gorilla house before we left. I was fascinated by a large ape who had a pile of lettuce within easy reach so he could lay down on his back and reach for a morsel without getting up.

We visited the smaller zoo in our area. Even though it is smaller, we still didn’t have the time to visit ALL of the buildings or animals. We will just have to go back.

AWARE

Depending on the season, “my friends in high places” may be more active. I’ve noticed more activity around birthday’s (mine and theirs), anniversaries of passing’s, Valentines Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Let’s not forget New Year’s Day. Hopefully you have gotten the idea. It really doesn’t matter what is going on. Either I need “help” and they are more than willing to lend a hand or they are moved by the “spirit” and like to play.

If I’m aware I catch onto what is going on. If I’m not, if I’m asleep, it might take a couple of actions before I wake up. Yesterday was an ABSOLUTLEY LOVELY DAY. For winter, the temperature was warmer than normal. I have to admit that I spent more time outside. Any “work” I had scheduled for the day disappeared. At the store, I bought a new issue of FIRST FOR WOMEN. My husband needed to get his driver’s license renewed which because of his age, entailed a driving test. I figured the magazine would make good reading while I waited.

I had looked at the schedule for TV programs and decided I would like to watch a cooking program on Vietnamese cuisine — I liked the chef. At the time of the broadcast, although it said it was Vietnamese Cooking, I watched a chef learn how Italian tomato sauce was made, then proceeded to show how to “put up” a jar of tomato sauce without additional ingredients. BACK IN THE DAY — I used to can tomato sauce. Although I still have all my canning equipment and jars — it has been many years since I have used them. Canning one pint of tomato sauce intrigued me. He followed that up with a guest who specializes in stress free cooking using fresh ingredients. Since my husband is diabetic, and I have sodium issues, healthy cooking is ALWAYS interesting to me. They gave her website but I haven’t had a chance to investigate it yet.

The new magazine came in handy. I read parts of it while I waited for my husband at the driver’s license bureau. Dr. Oz is suggesting that soup might play a big role in weight loss. (My yelling knees say I NEED TO LOSE WEIGHT.) He provide guidelines for the soup. While waiting INSIDE for my husband –(where it was warmer,) one of the clerks told her co-worker that her Doctor wants her to drink wine. When I took the opportunity to talk to her, she confirmed that BOTH her old doctor and her new doctor both had the same advice. (Red Wine is in my glass on a regular basis.)

We stopped at Target on the way home. I found myself at the display case for fresh vegetables. I really don’t know what I was looking for but I spied bagged stir fry vegetables marked down two dollars. Brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale, carrots already cut up — perfect for soup. On the way home I realized I needed more low sodium chicken broth. My husband was SO HAPPY that we needed to make another stop. Getting back in the car, I found a SHINY new penny and a shiny dime. “THANKS” was all I could say. One — Two — or more, does it matter?

The Election results — the violence in our world — all worry me. I’M VERY GLAD TO HAVE FRIENDS IN HIGH PLACES. Daily prayers for our world, country and city — All I can do! What about you?

MATTRESS

Commercials on television were rather numerous on the subject of buying a new mattress, both in town and out in the country. I knew ours was ancient. In fact, we had two layers of foam helping to cover the old coils. Matters came to a head when my husband injured his hip and wasn’t able to sleep at night. A closeout ad caught my attention after I hit my head on a cabinet door. We drove out to the location of the store, only to realize that the ad was misleading. It was a bait and switch, no mention of closeout mattresses was made at the store. In the same parking lot, another mattress store was located. We wandered over to check their pricing. The woman on duty mentioned that we would save money buying from her — lower sales tax than Chicago. We learned that she had spent 5 years taking care of her aged grandfather who had dementia. He also happened to be a ham radio operator. When I teased my husband about our mattress at the camper, she knew where Woodhaven Lakes is. She grew up 30 miles from there. As a matter of fact, she still lives in that general area. Because of the expressways, it is an easy drive in to work. SMALL WORLD. We would be able to get our new mattress the next day. I KNEW that wouldn’t work. First my husband was planning to go to a ham fest the next day. Crystal knew what that was. In fact, that is how we learned about her grandfather. I KNEW that in order to switch mattresses, much work needed to be done at home.

I devoted the next two days moving some of the clutter out of our bedroom. Our room is on the second floor. Reached by going up a twisting wooden staircase. Talking to our daughter on the mountain, I realized I needed to move some stuff on the first floor also. Specifically the clothes tree and the bucket that held umbrellas. Our stairway walls are covered with family photos. I removed two of them, but the rest remained in their place. The mattress men said they would hug the railing. It was a GOOD THING I removed the clothes tree. When we removed the foam, we realized just how bad our mattress was. Thankfully it was a VERY GOOD mattress when we bought it. None of our children remembered our getting a new mattress. I didn’t look at the date on the tag. Who knows how old it was.

Thankfully we were the first delivery for the mattress guys. Thankfully they were young. I think they felt aged when they left. They did a good job. Didn’t knock any photos off the walls, nor break anything. The new mattress is MUCH HIGHER than the old one. We decided to use one of the thicker foams on top. My husband picked out the mattress. It wasn’t the firmest, but second to it. The foam and my body are a good match. I slept a whole eight hours last night. I feel like the story of the princess and the pea. My feet barely touch the floor.

This morning the men were at our house to finish our roof. Once again rain stopped their progress. In fact, the temperature is in the 50’s. The open roof cooled down the house, so much so that I found a sweater. I looked at the thermometer setting, but I couldn’t adjust it. ?? I discovered that the furnace was turned off. Thankfully no hit on the head this time. The furnace is now turned on. Soon the roof will be finished and I will start putting our house back in order. At least — some semblance of order for our house.

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