The way to love someone
is to lightly run your finger over that person's soul
until you find a crack,
and then gently pour your love into that crack.
~Keith Miller

Friday, May 20, 2016

barely ahead of the red ...


 We left out a little later than we might have liked.  The donut shop, the donut shop, didn't open until 6:30 and little sister's only special request was a dozen chocolate glazed delights from the donut shop.   We waited for them to begin serving, purchased our dozen then we hit the road.  I drove the first leg while Four slept - finals week, long drive home, few days of pampering then off to the summer job.  We arrived Vicksburg in time for a late lunch (1/2 a shrimp po-boy, sweet potato fries (for her) and a cup of delicious seafood gumbo).  By then she was driving.  We had made the change at a fuel stop an hour back.  I chose the restaurant, one we had enjoyed on a previous trip through and she pointed the car towards it.  She likes to "know" exactly where she is going and takes pride in "getting" there without refreshing her memory.  I am a scardy-cat.  I have seen bad places and can imagine even worse.  I like to have very precise directional guidance when it is readily available.  So as not to diminish her pleasure, I kept quiet even after it was apparent that we were way off the well beaten path. I wanted to see how she would handle it.  It became intensely creepy, sweaty feet creepy, for me when the broken pavement gave way to a dirt road.  We were driving along side a railroad track (fully loaded with howling freight train) to the left and to our right, shanty houses whose yards couldn't imagine a lawnmower.  I had observed that even if the track wasn't full of high speed metal the past three street crossing were decorated with permanent barriers. Hmmm, nobody wants in and only the lucky find their way out I thought.  Still I said nothing.  I was probably breathing pretty loud.  The armrest may have groaned as my hand gripped it. At the end of "our street" a sharp right turn yielded a dead end in to the high grass.  Trash, empty liquor bottles mostly, created a boundary layer ... then really high weeds, no sunflowers, just thistle.  She calmly, almost lazily I thought, put the car in reverse while I scanned the immediate vicinity for "danger".  I thought of my handgun in it's case under my seat.  I wondered if it would alarm her too much if I reached for it.  "Well, at least all the crack heads are sleeping well".  That's what I said, noticing the three sofas (facing away from us) peeking out from the field as I calculated how many seconds it would take me to retrieve the bag, unzip it and chamber a round.  "Mom, I think you are over reacting" she said.  "I believe you might be surprised at how much distance there is between here and my version of over reacting..." I replied as I uncurled my hand and brushed down the tiny hairs on the back of my neck.  "...would you be offended if I "mapped up" some directions ...? "
See that picture at the top?  I snapped it from our parking place.  The boat was docked across the street in the Mississippi River.



The empty cologne bottle caught my eye before I noticed the chapstick and almost used up compact.  Last time we were here an old woman was sitting there panhandling.  All of these pictures were taken on the "tourist" side of the tracks  Below is a picture of the restaurant.  It's always packed and the food has never disappointed. 


This is my fourth child.  She is an adult now.  Sometimes she reminds me that she is competent, discerning ... aware.  Still, I fret.  I know that she has never seen anything really bad with her own eyes.  We have been able to provide a pretty nice environment for her, and her siblings, to grow up in.  I do, as a parent, and more especially as the mother parent, try very hard to let all five of mine live the lives that God gave them without a lot of background chatter coming from me.  I'm confident in their abilities to navigate successfully through the pleasures and perils which life presents.

Today I read a news piece about a woman who said she felt her life was being threatened by a bunch of Bernie supporters who were booing her.  She said they wouldn't listen to her and they were looking real mean at her.

What's "crazy" about the world these days isn't just the dangers that might be lurking at the end of dead end ghetto streets.  I am amazed at how weird it's getting everywhere.  The crazy soft life problems are more troubling to me then the crazy hard life problems. I asked Four what she thought about people boycotting Target.  She said people ought to use the bathroom at home if they're worried about what's going on in the next stall.  My mother was worried about VD on public toilet seats, my kid doesn't seem to be worried about much of anything.





It really began to pour down around Waco.  She drove from the Texas welcome center  the rest of the way home.  I know "what" I don't want to fly in so I pulled up the foreflight app to help her steer clear on the ground.  We had the road mostly to ourselves and arrived safely home ahead of the "red".

3 comments:

GretchenJoanna said...

Every trip is an adventure, seems to me. On the recent road trip with my youngest, who is 28, I did all the driving. It's more relaxing for me than being the passenger with my "baby" who doesn't give me the same sense of security that my sons or even my other daughters might; she lives in DC and rarely drives.. I was glad she didn't beg to take a turn, or accuse me of not trusting her, etc.

vanderleun said...

Getting home "safely and ahead of the red" is pretty much my new mantra.

Gordon said...

I'm pretty fearless when it's just me. I'm big, I can fight, and mostly they leave me alone. But some folks...who have never actually seen what can happen, how fast a situation can change from unthreatening to life-threatening, seem to believe that everyone is really kind and wise like Morgan Freeman.