Last Friday I was driving down North Central Avenue in Kent. I’m on my way to Maggie’s On Meeker to meet my friend Dave for a holiday get together over breakfast. My head’s in a deep think year-end buzz about life, the universe, and everything. You know what I mean.
“Wasn’t 2016 like totally something else?” Indeed it was, I’m thinking... My thoughts are running fast this morning, like a free-form jazz rap. “Who needs media today!? Not me, I’m self streaming live, baby!”
My internal kaleidoscope is busy juxtaposing random arrays of past, present and future, when it surfaces... I’m grateful. All things considered, 2016 was a very good year and I’m thankful for family, friends, work, successes, failures, encounters, several events, and a few great adventures too. When I look to 2017 it’s with optimism, yet I confess there was a few times I caught that darned little rascal trepidation, peeking out from behind inner chats.
I remind me that I’m peering into future and I can’t possibly have it all figured out yet. But I can arm myself with a positive vision, gratitude, and a good attitude. I’ll just have to wait and see about a lot of it...
But dang, like everyone, I lost people this year. A few longtime friends, a few acquaintances, a couple of former coworkers, and my dear 2nd cousin, Patty. This last one, a little too close to home, really threw me for a loop and it's taking a while to get over.
Taking stock, I think I accomplished a lot this year, though column B in this little litany of introspection reminds me, “Geez there’s a bunch of stuff I didn’t get to this year.”
Suddenly the traffic light turns yellow, then quickly to red when the car on my right and another in the oncoming lane both decide at the same split second to gun it through the intersection! This throws our little street scene into chaos. My heart skips several beats and inbetween beat one and beat two my adrenalin shot to extreme! “You f’n a-holes!” Followed by a Stentato Prestissimo Con fuoco fugue of expletives to embellish my recent opinions about the etiquette of local drivers.
When the light turns green a black limousine hearse passes through the intersection. Oh be still my heart. I swear, it wasn’t just me, our entire little intersection gathering had turned from indignant cursing rage to a humbled silence.
I’m thinking the universe spoke this day and we were all witness. As the limo pulls out in front of me I could see our flag draped over the coffin through the back window. It was so surreal and a powerful reminder of the truly important things in life. I think we were all listening too, as I observe everyone (including me) driving slowly, quietly, solemnly, away from the scene.
Have a Happy New Year my friends and loved ones! Be kind to one another and share your journey with passion, love, laughter and understanding.
May the road rise to meet you.
May the wind be always at your back.
May the sun shine warm upon your face; and the rains fall soft upon your fields...
Until we meet again, may God hold you in the palm of his hand.