I sit in my car and wait. My daughter is inside her teacher’s home having her oboe lesson. I hear the sounds of a small gas engine, likely a lawnmower. It drones in the background. The temperature, a pleasant 67 degrees. It is damp due to recent rain. On my lap is my trusty lap table. On that table is my iPad. I type.
Another Monday in my retirement. It started with me donning rain shoes, rain jacket, and umbrella. As usual, I walked to Starbucks. I was surprised to see Tom’s truck already in the lot, as I’m typically the first to arrive. He was inside drinking coffee and polishing off an unknown snack; probably a scone.
Donovan, the barista, poured my tall cup of Veranda as soon as he saw me enter. I grabbed it and sat down next to Tom and started our Monday review.
Tom didn’t go to the Blues Festival as he had wished, due to yesterday’s rain. I did go on my breakfast walk with Ralph, despite the rain. We checked an auto-posting problem for his website, talked about our kids, sipped our coffee. And so the conversation went. Tom asked me if I had time to go to Roselle with him and I did a quick calculation, as I needed to drive Grace to her lesson. A few adjustments were made, and off we went.
Back home I did a minor project, and now I sit waiting in the driver’s seat of my red Flex. I don’t like to be unproductive, which is why I brought my gear with me.
Sitting, typing, occasionally looking out the car’s windows to a slowly changing scene.
Now a senior man in bib overalls is mowing his grass directly across the street from me. The mower’s growl replacing the noise from the more distant one that droned earlier.
I seem content with my new found slower pace, but at the same time, I’m slightly restless. I continue to feel that I need to be doing more, accomplishing more, being more. This is countered by the reality that I am doing things, just not at the pace that I had originally set for myself. I grant myself forgiveness for the reduction in my output.
As I sit, I notice that I am feeling grateful, and I’m not sure why… let me think. Grateful for living in a good community, Grateful for friends and family. Grateful for my health. Grateful that I still have the wonder of a little boy inside of me.
My mind drifts again. What would it have been like if my grandparents had not immigrated from Slovakia? Likely, I would not exist. But what if I did? Limited education, limited opportunities, a limited life. I wonder if I would have made the best of it. It seems to be in my nature to view things in a positive way. I think that I would have been OK.
Some people think that they can fix their lives by being somewhere else. In some cases this is true, but in most cases, it is not. After all, we take ourselves with us wherever we go.
I drift again. I wonder what is in store for the rest of the day. I guess life is a box of chocolates. I’ll bite in and see what I get.
Dear reader, what are you grateful for today?
Posting on the road.
Driving back home.