Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Crazy day: It all started with Ricky (Home Works guy)e-mailing me directions to somewhere in Columbia and telling me that the Home Works planning meeting was not in fact on a Saturday like I thought, but this upcomming Thursday, and he could no longer give me a ride because of school stuff and that it's in Dutch Fork (2 hrs away). Okay, so, Kelli and Dan let me take the car because this meeting is way important! As a site leader, it's sorta, you better go or be left outta the loop.

(4:30 pm)
I follow the directions, and they're good for the first hour and 45 minutes. At that point in time, 4300 Broad River Road evades me. I later realize it's not because the locale was hiding... it simply did not exist. So, I cruise around Columbia for a while searching for either Dutch Fork Middle School or high school, or Dutch Fork Christian Church: places where I've heard of HW meetings being in the past. I find the first to, but no Home Works folks, so I pull off to call people, find out truths to this "meeting." As I don't have Ricky's number I call several others, and nobody knows of the meeting or where I can call to reach the head of HW. Well, I'm about to pull back out out to the road, when, the front right side of Sparky (our Caravan) takes and alarming dive. In the blackness, I saw no ditch, but just because I didn't see it doesn't mean it wasn't there. I try to go forward. Tires spin. I pop Sparky into reverse. Tires spin, spitting water everywhere.

(7:10 pm)
Sooo, what's a girl to do? I call a towing company... They say that the driver is out on another job and they'll call me when he returns. I give them my cell and wait. About 2 minutes after waiting, I get impatient (you know me) and I hop out of the car and search for rocks to pile under the wheel (it worked when I was younger.... my mom did it to our car...). No rocks but bricks! Wonderful! I carry bricks to the car and begin tossing them under the wheel. Seven bricks later, a car pulls up. Seeing the headlights, I make to jump for joy, but seeing that it's not a 4x4, I stop. A man and is 15 yr old daughter (hey mike, her birthday is the same as yours!) get out and he looks at the wheel. Yes, I know I'm in a ditch. Yes, I tried going forward and in reverse. See, the wheel isn't exaclty touching the ground. So, he offers to wait with me, and we stand there looking at the wheel. We get back into our respective cars to prevent frostbite and I, frustrated and angry at the world, dial up my friend Alan (hi alan!). Yay, he answers. And I cry to him about the injustice of it all! All I wanted to do was go to the planning meeting and I really wanted to see Hank! And I whine some more. He tells me it could be worse. I say I don't care, it's bad enough because I'm having a bad day and I'm going to whine anyway. He accepts this and listens because he's a good friend. :-D Then, I realize he's in California.

"Is it warm?" "I'm wearing a t-shirt..."
"Is it sunny?" "Yea..."
*Sniffle...*"That must be nice"

But, Alan is on the road, so I let him go. Feeling once again impatient, I run over to the other car and tell them that they really don't need to wait. I'm just going to sit in the car and wait for the tow truck.

"Lock your doors" "Okay"
"Don't go anywhere" "Not happening anytime soon, Mister"
(7:45 pm)
So, I send them on their merry way, and when they are out of sight, I hop out of the car and resume brick piling. Okay, see, the great thing about me is I look about 14... So, it took about 30 seconds for an SUV (which I shall call "GodSend") to pull over. It's a man and his wife and their 3 young'uns. Cute'uns, too, 2, 4, and 8 yr old. As soon as their window is rolled down, the mother bombards me with questions:

"Where are your parents?" "In Greenville. That's where they live"
"How old are you?" "Nineteen" (well, a week away)
"What are you doing here???" "Sparky's rather fond of ditches.."
No, I didn't say the last part, gave them an abridged sob story with much less sob. Yes, I know I'm not on Broad River Road. 4300 Broad River Road does not exist. Can you tow cars with that? No, they cannot, but they have a truck and a chain at home. SAVED!!! Mrs. Godsend is quite nervous about leaving me, and looking at the 2 and 4 year old, I deem it safe, and I lock up sparky and get it the back. Now this 4 year old, Garret, is quite a character. He begins to tell me about the time that he got stuck in a ditch. This happened to him back when he was 60 yrs old. Really? Yes, says Garret. I ask him how old he is now. Four. Ahh. It makes sense now....

We get back to their GORGEOUS house and Mrs. Godsend and the 2 and 8 yr old go inside and Garret and Mr. Godsend and I hop into the truck with a flash light and a chain. Garret begins to tell us about how his son found Santa Claus and Rudolph last winter. We get to my car and Mr. Godsend hops out and goes to work. I tell Garret I can tell he's very creative. "You can?" Yes, I say. You've got a great imagination don't you? Garret nodds. Mr. Godsend hops back in as Garret tells me about how his sister has a broken leg. Mr. Godsends smiles and shakes his head. He pops the truck into reverse and we move slowwwly and slowwwly and then Sparky ascends from the ditch! Oh happy day! (night, rather) Mr. Godsend gets out and begins to unhook the chain. I shake Garret's hand and tell him to have a blessed holiday season. Garret simply smiles. I silently wish God's blessing onto this lovely child and his wonderful family. I thank Mr. GodSend profusely. He wishes me Happy Holidays and I return the salutation. We return to our respective cars and to the road.

(7:55 pm)
I drive back to Broad River Road and call Allen. (Not to be confused with Alan.) Why did I not think to call him before? He tells me where the meeting is at. Oh, wonderful, Allen! He tells me all about they toys he's getting for X-mas.... cordless circ saw, reciprocating saw (sawsall to some of you), lucky lucky!

I hang up with Allen and arrive shortly thereafter at Dutch Fork Christian Church. There are about 4 cars in the lot. None of them being Woody (that obscene orange thing that's falling apart....) I run inside and say breathlessly to a man near the door, "Home Works meeting? Have they all left?" He points me toward a back room and tell me the director is still here. I spot Hank emerging from a room and I skip towards him, calling a thank you over my shoulder. I call to Hank and he looks up and stares at me with something like shock. I give him a hug and step back. Greet him and inform him that Ricky and Allen won't be making it to the meeting, and neither, it seems, will I. He shakes off the shock and agrees, amused, as the meeting has been over for a time. See, Hank didn't know I was coming to the meeting. He did not, in fact, know I was planning on doing HW at all! I must remember to thank Ricky for telling Hank that I was planning on attending.

This is the good part of the day. Hank and I spend just shy of an hour talking about Home Works and about the FVM. I am to be a site leader with Ricky and Jerome (wonderful!!!) and to try and talk Tommy Henry into plumbing during the Christmas Break session.

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