When I was a little girl, growing up in country Australia, probably Dempsey’s age, one day a week, my Nanna would take me on a ‘Mystery Drive.’
She drove an aqua blue mini cooper that smelled like Yardley’s English Lavender perfume. It’s gear stick wobbled and the floor heated your feet…..oh, how I looked forward to these weekly drives around our small town where Nanna would point out pretty gardens and quiz me on what street we were in.
I’m sure it was a way to teach me awareness in case I ever got lost…along with some time out for my mum! :)
Anyway, schools out for Summer…and this morning after dropping Dempsey at Summer Camp I took a wrong turn and found myself on a detour around streets I’ve never travelled down before. (My life in a nutshell) :) And I thought about Nanna and those beloved ‘Mystery Drives.’
And I became more aware of my surroundings, noticing and taking everything in….maybe because they weren’t familiar to me, but maybe because through my journey, now, I notice and see the beauty if I make a conscious effort and pay attention….
The street was lined with towering palm trees and the ‘almost Summer’ sky was a rich blue…just how you’d imagine Southern California to be if you’d never visited. I stopped my car to take this photo…..beautiful right?
Driving along I saw an elderly man, sitting in his driveway, alone, on a metal kitchen chair, staring at the concrete in the sun…I wondered what his story is and thought about slowing down to do this today and just soak in Mother Nature and my thoughts….
A teenager was happily walking a scruffy terrier on the footpath. The little dog looked happy to be out and about, taking in his surrounds too. And I knew if Dempsey was with me she would’ve said, “Aw look at that puppy Mummy…he’s so cute!”….cos she notices this stuff too...which made me smile. :)
Zig zagging through a few streets and down a hill I came across a big red barn…in the middle of suburbia!!
Growing up, these barn’s were always illustrated in my books, and this one is the first I’ve ever seen in the USA….and to think it’s only a few miles from my home. You never know what you’ll come across or notice….if you unlock your senses!
I finally found my way back to familiar streets and stopped at Walgreens.
Dumping a box of hair color, licorice and some toothpaste at the check out, the friendly lady with ‘Jan’ on her nametag asked how my day was….then added “Would you like to donate to the Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles today? They are an amazing place if you ever need them.”
Little did she know I’ve spent countless hours and nights in that hospital…and she’s right, the hospital is full of amazing staff who make a difference.
And I was surprised when she placed a paper balloon in front of me and asked me to write a child’s name on it to go up on the wall.....it gave me an opportunity to write our Angel's name...which I don't get to do much these days....and that made me smile too!
Last Friday night we had Happy Hour around our back T…Peter was lucky to be surrounded by women, with all our male friends away, he was loving life!
Throughout the evening, I looked around at everyone enjoying themselves, drinking red wine and snacking on cheese and crackers, chatting and I thought of my friend in hospital…..aware of how lucky I am…..
Thank you so much to all of you that said a prayer for my friend…it meant a lot. Her surgery went well and I guess now it’s all about healing and moving forward positively.
So now, I’m off to pick up my little mermaid from Summer Camp…who’ll be happy and chatty about her adventures today….I think I’ll tell her about mine…and maybe institute some ‘Mystery Rides’ of my own.
To teach Demps the gift of awareness and how life is a one way street…that no matter how many detours you take, none of them leads back…so to enjoy life’s every moment as none of them will happen the same way again…….. x