On second thought

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Traveling on a plane, work, not pleasure. Sitting in a window seat and a nice elderly lady sits next to me in the middle seat.After takeoff, nobody sitting in the aisle seat.

I ask her if she would like to sit in the aisle or window seat and I’ll sit in the other, to give us (me) more room. She says no thanks I’m fine. It’s early and I take a deep breath, no problem, no big deal.

Short flight to Chicago, then change planes for final leg of trip. It’s an early business flight, no children jumping around, no babies crying, passengers sitting quietly, not running to the bathroom every five minutes to empty their tiny bladders.

All in all a good flight, until she orders coffee and spills it all over me. Not a drop on her. I’m beyond annoyed, but hold it together and accept her apology. I’m sure she feels bad enough, but if she just would have accepted my offer to change seats, we would all be dry and clean, at least I would be dry and clean.

Sitting at a red light waiting to turn right. Car in front of me has blinker on to turn right, but not turning. I sit patiently and wait, even though no cars coming from the other direction.

The light turns green and he still doesn’t make the right turn. I give the horn a respectful beep. Just a short little beep to get his attention and he gives me the finger salute.

Once again, I’m beyond annoyed and would like to drag him out of his car and give him an education that he would never forget, but I know that it would just lead to trouble.

At the grocery store waiting in line for the lady to pay $14.52 to the checkout girl. She’s digging in her purse and she pays the girl like it’s an Olympic event. One $5 bill, nine $1 bills, which she counts three times — one quarter, two dimes, and seven pennies. I’m about ready to lose what’s left of my feeble mind.

When she is done, the lady and the checkout girl have a conversation about the weather and if it’s ever going to get warm again. I’m a 57-year-old male, who believes that he is fairly tough, but at this point I’m ready to cry like a schoolgirl and throw a hissy fit.

Thank God these incidents and others don’t happen often or I would surely be incarcerated in either a prison or a psychiatric hospital. As I relate and retell these stories to my wife, she always smiles and lets me know that I should be thankful for my wonderful life and not to get upset at these little inconveniences. You know what, Julie is right again. I look around and see so much heartache and struggle that is real, even in my own family.

I have a sister-in-law who is struggling with stage 4 cancer and her husband and son living this nightmare with her as we all are and there is nothing we can do to help. That’s a real problem.

I see, hear and watch our veterans not getting the care that they need and deserve, because of bureaucratic and political nonsense. That’s a real problem. I look at our country’s opioid epidemic and homeless situation. That’s a real problem.

I see our politicians fighting amongst each other, slamming, name calling, trying to discredit each other at our expense. That’s a real problem.

I see families here in Rome with no food or heat. That’s a real problem.  

I could list a thousand real problems that should make us annoyed and seek solutions. On second thought, instead of getting annoyed at the little inconveniences of having coffee spilled on me, or spending an extra few seconds at an intersection, or a few more minutes in line at the grocery store, I’m going to be thankful that I do have a wonderful life as Julie reminds me on a regular basis.

I suggest to all of you that you do the same. Forget the little annoyances that plague us all and be thankful for what you have and who you are. If you are reading this, you are the most blessed and fortunate, not to mention the richest one percent of the people in the world.

Have a great March and remember to pray for those in need. Julie just laughed at me when I asked is it March showers that bring April flowers? I guess I’m a month early.

See you all in April.

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