July 22nd, 2011

It happens.

In the process of traversing from town to town across this great country, you eventually will experience almost everything—good, bad, ugly and pretty. (I added “pretty” on to balance with “bad” and “ugly.”)

Leaving Ohio and arriving in New York, we found that our centrally-located place for occupancy ended up being in Niagara Falls. Just for the record, it is always a bad idea to stay at a tourist spot when you’re not actually there to be a tourist and spend lots of money. Our normal budget for lodging is always more than adequate—unless we happen to be staying in Niagara Falls. So our budget did not allow us to stay at our usually-excellent facility. Rather, we ended up in a dumpy place.

There were two fortunate things about the experience:

(1) Dumpy places are NOT infested with bugs, insects or rodents. Most of that, as it turns out, is just mythology. Rather, dumpy places are over-crowded by furniture purchased during the Eisenhower administration, and they’re laid out in such a way that you have to organize a path to wiggle your way to the bathroom. They are destitute, dilapidated and dingy. General score: D.

(2) Second fortunate aspect was that we only had to stay there for three days. But three days can be a long time (as Jesus found out, lying in the grave waiting for his resurrection). So along the line, I devised a plan to get us out of the dumpy place as early as possible by departing in the wee hours of the morning on Thursday instead of waiting for check-out time later in the day. It seemed crazy, as I am sure any escape from Alcatraz would during the planning phase.

But I cannot describe how overjoyed I was to load my stuff into the car at 4:30 A.M. and drive away from “DumpyTown.” We had a beautiful voyage through the greenery of Upper StateNew York, arriving in Warren, Pennsylvania, before the heat hit, just after dawn—to our new, less-dumpy quarters. Now, I am not a picky fellow. I have found in my life that contentment is not based on surroundings, but rather, our perception of those circumstances.

But sometimes, a dump is a dump. And the power we are given by God and our own free will is to survive the experience by making a plan to get away from it. It is amazing what we as human beings can endure when we know that we have outsmarted the situation and will soon exit, stage right.

I was rewarded by spending a lovely evening with some very hot folks in Warren, Pennsylvania, who endured the summer sweltering to come out to a non-air-conditioned church auditorium to listen to an hour-long presentation. I arrived back at my new headquarters—exhausted, refreshed, renewed and empowered.

In closing, we waste too much time complaining when planning requires no more effort at all.

Published in: on July 22, 2011 at 1:33 pm  Leave a Comment  
%d bloggers like this: