I had to go to the airport to pick up my father-in-law, yesterday. He is a robust and positive character whom I always say that if he were to grow a beard he would look and laugh like Santa. We (my step-son and I) went to the big shitty (city) using his (my father-in-laws) truck so that he could drop us off then go home-ward. He had been out west, Phoenix, Arizona, to visit with his family for Christmas. Before we had gotten very far down the road we had a flat tire.

 (Challenge number 1) the first thing I did was take a deep breath and realize that, ‘it is what it is.’ Recalling all my sayings, like; “a bad attitude is like a flat tire, your not going to get very far until you change it.” So, we got out and changed it. The challenge comes from using another’s vehicle, not knowing where the equipment for changing a tire is kept and the realization that not all the stuff is there. So, I improvised. “Those who fail to prepare, prepare to fail.”

(Challenge number 2) came when we came to a stand still in big city traffic. I never understood why people cut in front of others to try and get one car length ahead of another. How does this help oneself? A car length is what? 12 feet! Stop and then go, stop and then go. I am not use to this, a traffic jam in my little town is five cars waiting on a five minute train and once it has passed we all go. But, “the key to tranquility is acceptance,” and “Do not allow others to cast their unhappiness upon you.”

Then the cell phone rang, yep, it was Mr. Ben (my father-in-law) “where are you?”

“Stuck in a traffic jam about 45 minutes out.” I replied. “Get a coke and a handful of patience and we will be there as soon as we can.” The problem was they don’t sell a hand full of patience at the airport. Maybe a shot glass full, or is that half full.

When we finally got to what the traffic jam was all about, my heart sank. A car had caught on fire and the fire department was putting the fire out. The car was totally destroyed. There wasn’t any by-standers which hints to me that perhaps an ambulance had come and taken some one away because if it were me, I would be there watching the whole scene till the last trail of smoke toiled over the car. This makes me feel as though my day wasn’t that bad after all. “Thoughts will grow with-in the mind, only allow the good ones to take root.”

We got to rolling along and I started telling jokes to get the whole scene out of the boy’s mind. (Like the dog and the leopard and walking on water and the cowboy) We laughed and made the best of the rest of the trip. I realized that we made our day a good one dispite our challenges. I could have been upset by the challenges we were faced with and cursed everything under the sun for things not going the way I wanted them to, but… “It is what it is.”

Especially with challenge number 3, Mr. Ben wanted to stop at Wal-Mart and get what was needed to fix the tire. The problem was it was Sunday and the store was packed full of shoppers. I was a tad-bit rough looking from changing the tire and didn’t really dress for such a thing. I ran into my Lieutenant who was smiling and cheerful and then run into my Captain who was also in the holiday spirit. We did the “howdy-dos” (you know… “How are you? …this is… he is… I am..) and went on our way.

When we got back home and the story unfolded and you know how kids are about getting excited when they tell about their day. My step son told the story then stated… “It is what it is!”

I smiled.

by ~Art

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To stay on topic (challenges) and do a little finger pointing…

Here is a post that touches on such a thing from a blog I love reading. It is filled with wisdom writes and quotes that can only help one live a better life.

Reflections from a friend

The post….”Those that upset us” …is only one of many wonderful posts that this blog offers. I recommend it for any one wanting to fill their life quote arsenal with multiple concepts of how to deal with the challenges life throws at us.

by Pocket Perspectives and Jamba, a Buddhist monk

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remember to embrace life these holidays

because it is the season to be jolly

and …it is what it is!

have a harmonious day