Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Things We've Overcome

It's Tuesday night and I should DEFINITELY be writing all of the newspaper stories that are due in a couple days, but I am not. I am drinking wine and pretending that I have no responsibilities. No high school play in 7 days that is a nightmare of epic proportions. No newspaper deadlines. No more every day trips to Colville or Spokane for track. No Major Reasons (such as land lord visits) to not leave my house in this perpetual state of disrepair. No softballs games, rehearsals, graduation parties, birthday parties, papers to grade, lessons to plan, leaking dishwashers, broken fences, bills to pay, dogs to govern, kids to keep alive... just me and my wine. And a snoring hound dog and a naughty dachshund clicking around in the other room looking for snacks - well, at least somebody is cleaning the kitchen floor.

Speaking of naughty dachshunds, I am pretty sure that my kid figured out how to curb the nasty habit a certain wiener dog proudly boasts of dropping a deuce in the dining room every morning. Turns out that pooping outside is HARD. The grass is either cold or wet or cold and wet, frozen, snowed over, overgrown or green, and therefore very difficult to poop in. That's what they make dining room floors for, apparently. Anyway, when we were cleaning the other day, we came across a little pile of fake poop that somebody brought home from Boo Radley's and left on my pillow. Precious. Nat had the genius idea to set the faux-poo in Dagny's sacred pooping grounds (i.e the dining room) to mess with the pea-brained dachshund. So far the dog has been totally miffed that someone else used her zone and actually went outside IN THE RAIN to poop. Ok, granted it was on the covered back porch but still, not the dining room. WINNING!!

Another lofty accomplishment today happened after school. After rehearsal. After softball practice. After a quick jaunt to Taco Tuesday when I came home to cook more tacos for Aspen. And then it hit me. The smell: B.O. The real deal. Full on, grown up, sweaty armpits, coming from my youngest offspring. It is the end of an era, folks. No more baby Aspen. She was marched directly to the shower, handed a fresh stick of deodorant with firm instructions, and thus launched into her pubescent career. To the middle school softball team at practice today: sorry mom was so slow on the uptake.

One problem that we didn't successfully solve this week was the red sharpie marks all over the kitchen walls from a remodel project that was rudely interrupted by a divorce and that are a constant reminder of best-laid plans and how they don't work out. Nat and her buddy Belli helped me paint the hallway and kitchen in an attempt to scourge the marks of failed intentions from the walls, but alas the demon red kept seeping through. The walls look better, so there's that, but I finally resorted to just hanging random things on the wall over the tell-tale henscratchings. Sometimes Band-Aids are just the way to go, folks.


Oh yeah! And the yellow iris "volunteer" that decided randomly to grow in my half barrel planter that is really just a few pieces of rotten wood leaned agains my also rotten wood porch step. I am hands down the most unsuccessful gardener that ever was, partly because I am gone all fire season, letting plants die, and partly because I just don't bother to try. But it warms my heart to see the happy yellow flower smiling defiantly in the face of utter adversity: hail storms, digging wiener dogs, giant flopping hounds, and of course, me. It stands tall and bright, promising beauty and hope in a world of falling apart, rotten wood and holes dug by a neurotic dog. I am sure it's symbolic on some level but I haven't had enough wine yet to interpret it.

All of this overcoming and finally, at 9:38 PM, I settled down on my couch and decided to catch up on season 6 of Game of Thrones. The whole reason I subscribe to HBO Now - and all of the episodes so far this season that I have been saving to binge watch. Obviously I don't need sleep to teach school. Or direct a play. Or write stories. I have faith that it will fulfill a deep seated need to find resolution since the cataclysmic end of Season 5 when I swore I was done with all of it. So here I am, hoping beyond hope that Jon Snow isn't really fully dead, yet. Maybe a Band-Aid for him, too?

Anyway, I have a lot going on right now with all of the wine and Targaryens to catch up with, so I will just leave you basking in the warm happiness of all of my successes of late. You're welcome.







Monday, May 23, 2016

Things About Time

The trouble is, you think you have it... Time, that is. These words have been attributed to Buddha but they are actually a paraphrase of something the Yachti shaman Don Juan said in Carlos Castenada's Journey to Ixtlan: 

"There is one simple thing wrong with you – you think you have plenty of time … If you don’t think your life is going to last forever, what are you waiting for? Why the hesitation to change? You don’t have time for this display, you fool. This, whatever you’re doing now, may be your last act on earth. It may very well be your last battle. There is no power which could guarantee that you are going to live one more minute."

Living in the constant reality that any moment may be your last, or that of the people around you that you love changes the whole game. We wander around like zombies, already dead to the phenomenon that we live finite lives with an absolute ending that is totally unpredictable. We walk through life rituals, many that we hate, punching the proverbial clock until it runs out. Every single day death chases a cocentric ring around my own life, circling ever closer to me as it hits families and friends that I know without warning, taking husbands, daughters, mothers, sons, wives and fathers. Best friends, cousins, aunts and uncles... Every minute the larger "We" loses another loved one and the circle tightens down a little smaller, a little closer to home. 

Even if you believe that life goes on after death - some glorious golden-streeted, angelic-chorused hall of eternal bliss - there is no escaping the fact that for those of us left behind, death means the end of relationship here, the end of seeing, touching, talking to the ones that we lose. 

We all know this, but at the same time we make decisions every day to put off  chasing the things and the ones that we love and doing the things that make us who we want to be. We avoid hardship and inconvenience and pain, we take the comfortable pathway to a paycheck, to conflict-free relationships that require as little of us as possible. And at any moment, the chance to rise to a challenge could be gone forever.

 Our grandparents lived in a time that had their mettle tested through some of the roughest turmoil that our country has ever seen, and it produced a generation greater than any in our history. They raised their children, however, with the ultimate goal of getting past hardship, glorifying convenience and comfort and enjoying the enablement of technology developed in answer to back breaking labor and time consuming menial work. Two generations later and we are technology dependent, and the worship of convenience has escalated to shocking heights. Injustice has become a hashtag, and battles  have left the trenches of foreign wars for the mud slinging campaigns of social media offenses. We lack the motivation to tackle the worst enemy of our destiny: the person in the mirror. It's easy to armchair quarterback the failing world around us than it is to be the change that we want to see in the world... We can get to that later, right? Later is a myth. 

We get the college degree of least resistance to get the job of maximum benefit to achieve the optimum number of vacation days for golf and video games. Retirement is the golden standard of success. To be able to STOP doing things we hate. But retirement is as mythical as later. Why don't we stop now? Why don't we chart a new course through some rough waters to do the things we love for the rest of our lives? The conversation of destiny and passion is all but forgotten. And to risk financial stability for the scary reality of launching into an unknown dream is relegated to Hollywood. Heck, we're so scared of failure that we don't even leave our parent's basements.  

And time goes by. Every minute is one closer to whichever end we are fated. One more opportunity to seize the day, capture the moment, has passed. I feel it keenly when my friends and family members lose loved ones suddenly. There really is no time like the present, because it's the only time that we are guaranteed. I hope that where I am in this moment is exactly where I need to be to realize exactly who I am. I was created for the purpose of loving deeply, sharing broadly and pushing limits. Even here and now in a high school classroom, watching the rain slither it's way out of a dark grey sky, I can do that, and intend to. 

Hats off to all of you, my friends, who have dared to risk greatly and win the day that you are living in. I see you and I love you for it! 


























Thursday, May 19, 2016

Things About Getting Old

I don't care what you say, I still like staying in hotels. There's something about the pristine white sheets that don't have filthy swirls in the foot region, gently reminding you how long it's been since you mopped your floors, or perhaps took a shower. There's something about someone else cleaning the toilet for you, and the shower, and fresh towels that don't smell suspiciously like a middle schooler used them and refolded them just to fool you. Don't tell me about the hairs you've found when you pulled back the covers, or the documentary about the glasses washed with toilet rags, or the blood stained carpets, or the fact that the comforters are never, ever washed. Don't steal my joy. Let me bask in the glory of a bedroom that isn't plagued with mountains of questionably clean laundry which apparently has no permanent resting place, or bird feathers all over the floor from Crookshank's latest love offering. Let me enjoy the rhythmic lull of the soft pounding from the room next door - kids jumping on the bed, I am sure. Let me embrace the rare privacy of knowing both locks AND the do not disturb sign are doing their cock-sure best to keep out children, animals and housekeepers.

I got to spend two glorious nights in Spokane at a hotel this week, and I am can't decide if I am mildly embarrassed or just a smidgeon proud of the fact that I went to bed before 8 PM one of those nights. It's just that the bed was so clean and big and wonderful... I couldn't even muster the fortitude to venture to the hotel basement for my two complimentary drinks during the reception hour. I must be getting old. A few years, maybe even months ago, I would have been so consumed with the  FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out, ICYMI), that I could easily find myself wandering the streets of any city I was visiting to see what mischief I could find at all hours. Now, there are precious few motivators to get me out of my hotel room.

I have outgrown many impulses it would seem - spontaneous excursions, loud parties and late nights have all begun to lose their appeal for me. Instead of taking inventory of who I might run into at a party, I now take inventory of how much I actually LIKE who I might run into, and whether it's enough to rally me out of sweatpants and into public. At one point in my life it was all about being seen, getting out, and HAVING FUN. Now it's all about being well rested, and couches are really a lot of damn fun once you get to know them. I have officially become a lightweight with a 3 beer cap which occasionally gets blown with dire consequences and many days of regret. The flip side to this is that I am not succesfully functional without those three beers on any given day, but don't tempt me into more unless you'd like to assume my responsibilities for the next three days. I am old. I will be 39 in three weeks and two days. 39 seems SO. OLD.

I am not sure when a 'party' in my life began consisting of a sleeve of saltine crackers, a cube of butter and an entire season of Justified on Netflix. Something has gone terribly wrong. I began packing a chair to sporting events at some unidentifiable point in time. Next thing you know I will keep an umbrella in the car next to the safety blanket in case of spectating induced hypothermia. Maybe the first warning sign was those jeans I bought because they were comfortable. Or maybe it was when I asked for a blender for my birthday. I am not sure exactly, but it's happened so sneakily around the edges of me playing Peter Pan and pretending that I couldn't grow up that suddenly here I am: with full time work and sensible footwear.

It's too soon folks. Too soon to throw in the towel and call it quits. Too soon to quit bouncing on the hotel beds (DEAR JESUS) and much too soon to go to sleep. There's a lot of sunshine to chase, adventures to be hard-won and excitement to live through. I'm not dead yet. Only almost 39. But I think that is part of the enamorment I have with hotel rooms - I can't help but feel like a little kid pretending to be a responsible grown up with enough going on to stay in my own room. It's so fancy and sophisticated, and I know it's really just a big joke on those hotel people that they have a kid crashing in one of their large adulty beds. I suppose the intruige of not being entirely sure that I will have a successful method of payment adds to the whole experience, but...



























Monday, May 16, 2016

Things That Are GREAT

It's almost like God shrink wrapped this week in pink cellophane with a whole bunch of curly ribbon and handed it to me like an early birthday present. And it's only Monday. Usually by 11:21 on Monday morning I am having a recurrent discussion with The Diety about when I will quit suffering the consequences of poor life choices every.single.day. But it's Monday morning, and things are looking UP this week.

For starters, I came home yesterday after a long day with a good friend and Aspen had CLEANED HER ROOM. Voluntarily. Without Instruction. Or reminders. All the way. Clean. To the point that there is identifiable CARPET visible! Holy cow! By herself! All these years and I thought she was developmentally delayed in organizational functions. Turns out, she's totally capable. This knowledge will probably not serve her well in the future, but I couldn't be happier. I am not even gonna mention the collection of questionable items peeking out from under the bunk beds. Or her bed making skills. I am super impressed. Of course Natalee is mildly disgruntled that I am not as ecstatic over her clean room because, well, it's old news. But seriously, super proud of you, Nat. And Aspen - I am still reeling.

And then it dawned on me after I showed up for school and the teacher's meeting that I usually sit through feeling TOTALLY lost got cancelled AND Mrs. Wilson had come back for a weeklong cameo appearance to teach sex ed in 9th grade health, so I was off the hook for first period! I think she had a twinge of guilt asking a substitute (who, incidentally, was homeschooled for all 12 school years) teach sex ed. Drugs and alcohol was enough of a stretch when I realized that my students knew more about the subject than I did. Don't worry, parents, I enlisted one of my cop buddies to bail me out of that awkwardness.

So all in all, my week is looking pretty up. I get to play hooky from school for two days for some fire training stuff, which is always fun. Sort of. But lest you think I live a charmed life, I just spent half of my lunch break trying to open the straw for my sack of milk. Did you know that school milk comes in sacks now? Yeah, and like a Capri Sun, you stab a little straw into the plastic and hope for the least amount of spray back possible. That's assuming you can get the straw out of the cellophane wrapper. School lunches FTW! I am unsuccessful enough in these endeavors that I mostly undertake them in my classroom when no one is looking except that one weird kid that likes to come in and talk to me as a cover for snitching his computer to play games on during lunch break. I think he was too preoccupied with The Dinosaur Game to notice the milk that I accidentally squirted all over my lap. Hey guys, I didn't choose the thug life...


So here's to a golden week of slightly fewer stresses than normal and a couple of lucky breaks. Including FINALLY having the school stage relinquished to me from the archery classes so we can spend the last two weeks of rehearsal for the school production actually being productive. HAHAHHAHAAHAHA. Or whatever. Hey man, I have a handful of teenagers spewing Shakespeare. I'm calling it a win.
















Thursday, May 12, 2016

Things About Morel/Moral Hunting

Last weekend I went morel hunting with one of my besties. Mostly it was a good excuse to get out into the hills on 4 wheelers and I was really not much help since I barely even knew what a morel looked like. But I learned a lot on that perfectly warm Sunday afternoon about morels and morals and mountains and why good excuses and good friends are so important.

It had been awhile since I had spent much quality time with this particular friend, since her life had been thrown into crisis mode with more than one very sick family member shortly after she had surgery on her foot. Finally, everyone was back home, most of them on the road to recovery, and she was fully ambulatory. We were overdue for a frolic in the woods, no question.

Both of us being EMTs, we were, of course, prepared for any misadventure. Equipped with the appropriate 'hydration' apparatus, our guns, proper footwear and adequate sunblock, we tore off through the forest in the late spring heat. The summertime dust hadn't found it's way through the April shower-soaked earth yet, so it was the perfect touch of wind and sun on our faces without choking clouds of moon powder.  It's hard to overstate the power of a wordless conversation between friends on a back road over the noise of a four stroke engine. Sometimes there just aren't enough words, or the right words, to cover all of the Bad Things that can happen over the course of a month or two.



Not that we didn't talk. Of course we did. We got off the bikes and hiked up around a big fancy solar powered surveillance set-up of some kind that Homeland Security runs up on top of the mountain. We solved all of the world's problems from the very tip-top of our little corner of it. We talked about missing out and messing up and when you know that you've made the Right Choices, if you ever do. And then we dropped into the deep, dark recesses of creek beds and shady enclaves where morels most certainly waited for us.

I have always believed that everything happens for a reason. The good things, the bad things - there's a moral to every story, an intention behind every action and a cause for every effect. But I think sometimes finding the moral in a story is almost as hard as finding a morel in a forest. Sometimes the bloodsucking pests are in the way, sometimes they're covered with overgrown foliage and sometimes, you just don't see them. My friend, the experienced morel hunter, rode right past a bumper patch that somehow caught my eye. And that's what friends are for. Helping you see the morels in your forests or the morals of your stories. Helping you make sense of the senseless things and make sure the effort does not go without reward.

Turns out it was more mosquitos than morels waiting, but we did find a few mushrooms. I've decided that per capita, the ratio of morels to mosquitos in any given area is about 1/712. Each tender fungal delight cost us approximately 17 mosquito bites. Of course, both of us being EMTs and ready for anything, we had plenty of repellent with us. Oh wait: no. Not a drop of DEET to be seen for miles. Not that anything was visible through the cloud of Cessna sized pests that followed us like a superhero cape flying off the back of our four wheelers. Being a clever and ingenuitive kid, I dug though the first aid kit and came up with a packet of BioFreeze which we slathered all over our bare arms. Interestingly enough, mosquitos don't like the icy-hot burn of muscle gel and actually buzzed off until the menthol vapor had disappated. Life hack, FTW.


But it was worth it. Eventually we outran the bugs and got back to the business of Fixing Life and divvying up mushrooms. It occurs to me that there is no perfection quite like a sunshiney warm day with a good friend and no place important to be, except right where you are. In the cloud of mosquitos or on top of the mountain. To smell the season-wakened poplars and the rain that's rolling in off the clouds to the north, without any demands or requirements - this might be heaven. To follow the tracks of the wild things, sit in the old clearings of our great-grandparent homesteaders which have given way to nesting elk and rustling snakes, I can think of no greater privilege than to live in this unhurried, unviolated space with some of the greatest people I have ever met who are helping me find my morels and my morals- this is wealth in it's richest form.

























Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Things That I Deal With

My house.

It's where all the cute, innocent baby bunnies of the world come to die. 

Like it's not enough that I've been relegated to teach 9th grade health class. Or that I single handedly provide a breeding ground for every pestilence known to man, or that I adopted a dog who claims the world record in more hair shed than retained in a 24 hour period... but must the bunnies all die here as well?

And it's not like I provide them with peaceful, humane exits from this world of suffering. No. Nope - Violent, horrific deaths full of terror and predatory nightmares.

The first three were tiny newborns that The Cat (Crookshanks) delivered to me in the kitchen: live, squealing trophies of his hunting prowess that I quickly confiscated and tried to resuscitate, to no avail. And then a few months later, The Cat brought me segments of what was probably one of the surviving siblings of the earlier victims of his serial murders. Segments. Cleanly separated, freshly dead, segments. Served to me somewhat reluctantly from Crookshank's favorite eating spot, under my bed. My own, serene, once unviolated bed. First it was the back half. Waking up to the smacking, tearing, pleased with himself growl of a contented feline, I groped under the bed until I found the carnage. The crime scene was relocated outside, only to be recreated later when The Cat returned with the front half of the dead rabbit. You know, all ears and cute little nose, with dead glassy eyes, perfectly chopped off just behind the front legs. Once again I did a gruesome recovery operation, and tossed the entire quivering package, cat and rabbit front end altogether, outside.

You'd think that was enough, you know? Like really? Aren't you over it now, Crookshanks? The rite of passage has been accomplished! Not really, I guess, since I woke up the next morning to just the decapitated head of the poor beast. In my living room. On the floor. Still dead.

For these reasons, the long-operating dog door was put out of commission and we began the new adventure of trying to potty train a stubborn dachshund who had always had open reign between house and yard. As if.

I guess after a few months Crookshanks got the hint that I wasn't impressed with his love offerings, and I guess he was unimpressed with the 140 lb bloodhound that moved in and loved nothing more than to chase him around the house. Anyway, The Cat quit brining dead things in, which I appreciate. To his credit, he also trained the bloodhound to quit chasing him by stopping dead in his run and turning to rub all over Frank's legs, which confounded the giant hound to no end. Frank had to go outside to run off some of his anxiety from being fondled by a cat.

A few days ago, a new baby bunny appeared, hopping around Nattie's rabbit barn, reaping all of the sloppy benefits of tame, show-quality bunnies arrogantly flipping the food out of their cages. I would assume that the new grey bunny was somehow related to the murdered litter from earlier this year, all offspring of the rabbits that our Beloved Neighbors across the way turned loose when they got tired of feeding them. But it was cute. And maybe even a survivable age - and more importantly, Crookshanks didn't seem too interested in working that hard for a few slices of fricassee. So the grey bunny frolicked merrily around the rabbit shed for several days, nibbling grass and taunting the dogs who were much too slow.

And then one night, through my open window, I heard the screams. All too familiar with rabbit screams, I got up three different times in the after-midnight darkness to try to find him, but no luck. I thought maybe Frank finally got stealthy enough, or Crookshanks got motivated for a minute... but something was going terribly wrong for the little grey bunny. I couldn't find him, or Frank, or Crookshanks. The screaming finally stopped and I fell asleep to dreams of gore-encrusted bloodhound lips and rabbit heads on my pillow. But the next morning there was no sign of foul play, and no sign of the rabbit.

Today I went out to fill up the water in the back yard and I found him. He had tried to squeeze through the wire fence and gotten stuck by his hips. He was intact, seemed unharmed. Probably died of fright. Just hung up in my stupid fence. There wasn't a scratch on him, just terror stricken, dead rabbit eyes. I had to tug him free and relocate him to a more appropriate decomposing place. Moving dead furry things ranks right up there with my least favorite activities ever, BTW. Isn't that what boys are for? Oh yeah, right.

So, here I am, in the rabbit house of horror. And it's not like I've ever gotten a good stew or a furry pair of slippers out of the deal. Makes me mad. There's just no justice in the world.

one of Nattie's (don't worry, no bunnies were harmed in the making of this photo)


Note: all of Nattie's baby bunnies are safe and snug in their hutches. Although she announced to me a couple days ago that she has two with "special needs". Good thing we have experience there... 

Monday, May 2, 2016

Things About Getting In Trouble

I got pulled over today.

Yes, I was speeding. Again.

Yes. I deserved a ticket.

Yes, it was the Washington State Patrol and none of my buddies from the county who could give me a scolding, tell me about the latest batch of chocolate peanut butter stout they're brewing at home and send me on my way.

No, he didn't write me a ticket.

I am not sure why. Maybe it was my winning smile. Maybe it was the genuine nature of my polite apology for blowing by him at 130% of the posted speed limit. Maybe it was that he had already filled his quota. I am not sure, but he let me off.

Given that the trooper made more than one reference to the stickers on the back of my car, I am suspicious that they had something to do with his leniency. Although I am not sure if it was the beer stickers, the Avett stickers, or the Humanizing the Badge #weseeyou on my bumper that did the trick.

As I handed the cop my license and registration, I also let him know that I have a concealed weapons permit and that I have a gun in the car. He remarked that he assumed as much based on my stickers. I puzzled over whether it was Rogue Brewing or the Cascades National Park decal that gave away my weapons propensity. Then he asked me for my proof of insurance and what I carry. I told him a Glock, a G42, as I frantically tore through All Of The Secret Compartments in my car and every wallet lying around looking for an insurance card. Either feeling bad for my obvious frenzy or keenly interested in avoiding writing a citation, the officer began helping me thumb through the cascade of useless receipts and papers from my glove box. "That's funny, I would have figured you'd have a Ruger, based on your stickers." he remarked casually, after suggesting I try to pull a digital version of the card up on my phone. "Oh yeah, no service here." he shook his head ruefully. I was muttering some lame excuse about giving all of my printed copies of the insurance cards to the teenagers on my policy, while wondering if being pegged for a Ruger person was a compliment or an insult. Knowing virtually NOTHING about most guns, I smiled politely and shook my head.

-SIDE NOTE- why is it ALWAYS later, driving away, or lying awake at night, hours later, that I think of the Funniest and Most Witty Things To Say, and never at the appropriate moment? Seriously. -END SIDE NOTE-

It's kind of a relief to hear from an objective source that the stickers on my car don't scream greenpeace or immediately label me as a Trustafarian Hipster. I mean it's NOT like it's a Subaru, after all. But it's also not like I have an NRA membership sticker and a rebel flag, so I am curious now about what my stickers really do say to the average tailgater.

After what seemed like 6 hours of searching, the dedicated trooper found my insurance card for me, filed carefully with the instruction manual for my 2006 Toyota Sequoia. I was relieved, both because the cop was a handsome fella that had me all flustered and because I was having visions of court dates to provide proof of insurance and explain why I was trying to beat sound waves to Colville. I also felt a little bit bad that he was about to offer to follow me into cell phone range to call my insurance company. He then commented on the giant crack running across the breadth of my windshield and how I should look into getting it fixed, and I realized he was letting me off. I was surprised enough that I am not sure I even said thank you.

I've gotten my share of speeding tickets. I've deserved them. The last time I got pulled over, on the same road, probably going the same speed, my bestie in the back seat was high on pain meds after surgery and offered to flash the officer if he would forgo a ticket. Turns out they don't always go for that and it didn't work. I could have gotten another one today, but I got lucky. I wouldn't have been mad at the officer if I got written up, but I will say I was a little disappointed in myself for taking his time when he probably could have been doing something more important... although maybe giving a humbling reminder to a careless driver like me is as much protecting and serving as a State Trooper can get to on a sunny Monday afternoon in the middle of nowhere.

It reminded me how thankful I am that we have these men and women out here, doing their thing - the Thin Blue Line between us and chaos - protecting and serving whether we deserve it or not because they believe in a greater good - a higher order of peace and safety. It made me thankful that they're human and give us breaks sometimes, and that they hold us accountable too. Would I be as grateful for this particular State Trooper if he had written me up a citation for 15 over the speed limit AND almost failure to produce insurance AND reckless driving with a busted windshield? I'd like to think I am mature and reflective enough to say yes, but I am also a human on a tight budget and (as evidenced by my driving) no time to spare, so maybe I would have grumbled a little, but grumbled thankfully.

But maybe he knew that I needed a little break. I needed a little #weseeyou back at me - that while I need to slow down, I'm not a terrible person and can be treated like I am important enough to help rifle though a glove box and get-out-of-jail-free, just this once, maybe. He made my day. Really. And that's saying something since I got to hang out in the sunshine and watch track meets and softball games and spend time with the people I love.

Oh yeah, and he was handsome.

To the Trooper that I was too nervous to even get the name of: Thanks. #weseeyou