Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Fun Moments in Travel - Episode 10

We thought it would be nice to go for a family outing one Saturday evening for Ben to go fishing, the kid to take pictures and for me to take a walk.  Actually, the idea was more like I wanted to go for a walk and Ben wanted to go fishing and the kid didn't want to go anywhere.  We left later than I would have liked due to what I will refer to as a kid strike.  These usually involve an extensive amount of time spent in the bathroom "getting ready," followed by an attempted negotiation by the kid to stay home which is shut down by the usual, "This is not a negotiation speech," which leads to the need to go pick out socks then, painstakingly, the kid manages to get into the vehicle with a look of petulance that a photographer can only dream about capturing at a photo shoot.

Less than an hour to go before sunset, we manage to get to our destination.  We don't have much time so I tell Ben to go park by the water.  It is not as warm as it was supposed to be so I know it's going to be a quick, cold walk.  The kid stays in the car to draw and we don't even bother to discuss it.  We got where we wanted to be in spite of the kid strike.

I get going for a walk and make it to the other side of the pond, take a few pictures and notice that someone has parked their car directly behind ours.  Weird, why would someone park there?  I look over to see Ben put down his fishing pole and say something to someone but I can't tell if the kid got out of the car or if it is someone else.  I try to listen for voices.  Is he getting robbed?  Is the kid in the car still?  What is going on over there?

Oh well, no screams, so I keep walking around a bit more, taking a few more pictures but the car is still there.  I start to walk back over but wonder if I need to call 911 or take pictures of the car or something so I hesitate about halfway back.  I send a text to Ben, "Okay over there?"  "Yep."  "Ready to go?"  No response.  "I don't see you fishing."  No response.  I wonder if he's really okay or the person robbing him made him type that so I call and try to look like it's not me calling from 200 feet away, just in case I really should be calling 911.  A robber would totally fall for that - some eyewitness missing the entire crime because she's calling someone while looking at the tree in the water.  Seems legit.  Ben answers hurriedly, "Where's your insurance card!?"  I try to tell him it is in the glove box and he says, "He's back, gotta go."

I decide it is safe to approach and get to the car after the other car has left.  Apparently, a police SUV car.  It turns out, I told Ben to park in a permit only parking lot.  He also didn't have his fishing license nor could he find proof of insurance in my car (which I showed him in less than 5 seconds when I got to the car).  Each instance was a $100 fine, though we could go to court to fight the insurance one.  Fortunately, Ben didn't get anything but a warning.  Our car ride home was mostly quiet with a few noises from the back seat about how we shouldn't have gone out and, especially, not brought the kid along.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

2017 Be More: An Update

Life has been flying by.  I suppose that means I have been having fun, right?  I can't say that I feel like I have been actively working on being more but when I sit down to write this update, I realize I am being more than I realized.

Be more giving.
I've started volunteering with the kid once a month.  Usually, I am nervous about volunteering.  It's a new place with new people and I don't know what the expectations are so I worry about not doing a good enough job.  After a few months, I decided that any help is better than no help and it's volunteer work so they can't fire me.  Now, instead of being nervous, I look forward to it.  When we are done, I feel a sense of being more - giving of myself, being an example to the kid, benefiting the local community and appreciating that the life I am living right now gives me the opportunity to do something to help others.  I want to volunteer more and am actually looking into something that takes me way out of my comfort zone.  We will see where that one leads in the next few months.  Stay tuned!

Be more well read (or other activity you enjoy).
I used to read a lot when I was younger (read: before college, when it was for fun and not for assignments) but as I got older, I had other things to do or would lose interest in what I was reading.  Over the last few months, I have read three books.  I realize this is a low number to some people but it's more than I have read over the past 5 years, easily.  Taking the time to actually read a book to completion is being more - more patient to finish the book and more disciplined to stop reading at a decent hour so I could wake up rested (this was another problem I had with reading - I couldn't put books down and go to sleep).  I am currently re-reading a book by Robert Fulghum, "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten."  I think the first time I read this book, I was in high school.  It's a grouping of short stories so I can read as many chapters as I like and put the book down at a decent hour.  This is probably the fourth time I am reading this book.  In all, I've read four of his books and will actively pursue reading the other ones out there that I haven't read yet.  I love physical books.  Reading on a screen just isn't the same for me and since I usually read before bed, I prefer not to stare at a lit screen before heading off to sleep.  Oh, and if you are curious to know what books I've read - they were, in order: Alfred Hitchcock Presents: Stories to be Read with the Lights on (Alfred Hitchcock), The Giver (Lois Lowry) and I'll Push You (Patrick Gray and Justin Skeesuck).

Be more inspiring.

I took to facebook a few months ago and posted positive or funny quotes for 30 days in a row.  Some people were concerned about my mental state while others were encouraged with me.  A few weeks later, people were asking me about posting more - they had started looking forward to what the day's thought or quote would be so I did another 30 day stint with even more positive, happy or quirky posts.  The quotes were intended to give me a positive start to each day (or evening if mornings didn't allow time for the post) and ended up being a piece of inspiration for anyone who happened to cross my posts.  I'm currently working on a different 30 day of posts and can't wait to share that with my facebook family!

That's where I've been.  How about you?  What have you been doing to be more?  Any suggested reads for a non-reader?  Share!