Monday, January 14, 2013

Royal Ride

My mind is "a jumble" with thoughts about the things I have accomplished in my short fifty. I can drive in the streets of my home town and see tangible things that will be there long after I am gone . An archway over a gated fence I built for a woman decades ago, all the homes I had a hand in building, concrete and stone that I have laid. On them all I have left my hand and yet sometimes I doubt. Making a difference, a mark that lasts, a good impression made by my own hand. The smile of the old woman leaning on the sill of her kitchen window with one leg swinging side to side and a happy smile after I had transformed the kitchen from a rotted hole into a thing of beauty is the best type of accomplishment. Not the toil and hard work, the smile is the mark I remember.
This weekend we rolled down the beech road, 30-A, between Destin and Panama. The beach names blend together. I saw only glimpses of the ocean from all the beachfront homes and resort communities blocking any view. Along the path I had many conversations and encouraging words about what I am doing. Some say they have been "following" me, have read these blogs, came to find me to let me know how impressed they were, how important the message is , that my journey is inspiring. Still I doubt what I do lasts. I receive messages from families and individuals who saw me as they passed and it uplifted their day, or sparked hours of conversation during a long drive, or that they are walking each day. "i admire what your doing for diabetes awareness ... ( with this iPhone I just pushed a button, a message of the type I was speaking of appeared, I must have unknowingly copied and pasted it now in my moment of self doubt...) ."am so glad you have a Facebook so i can follow you .i seen you when you were parked in the front of my neighborhood in avondale .Louisiana and i seen the world ball along the side of your van .it was not till a couple of days that i read about you in the news paper and your story .i really would i could have met you and taken pictures.i lost my mom at 40 with her diabetes and i currently am taking 5 shots a day for my own .wishing you the best at your journey .keep the writing up i enjoy reading it." My mind still"a flutter", I will move on to another paragraph ...
This post was supposed to be about Bob. Bob walked up with a smile. I had walked by Bob's home last year and again that morning. He and his wife have a home along the beach and also in New Orleans on Royal Avenue. I had passed one morning last year as he was in his front yard. This day he offered me a ride, if I needed one at the end of the day, before the subject came up, as we talked there on the beachfront. He seemed to know more about me than I had said. At the end of the day I gave him a call and during our ride back to retrieve the van. as we talked about my travels he recalled the reason I found myself on Royal Avenue in the French Quarter that day. I had been invited to meet someone for lunch at a favorite eatery in the heart of the quarter, he said everyone there was talking of me and I would be welcomed with much enthusiasm because he was going to tell everyone I was coming. When I arrived and called the man who led me there he did not answer his phone, no one there knew his name and none had any idea why the World was tied to the pole outside the deli... Bob had read some of my posts. I remember thinking at the time when I had walked for two days to get to the midst of The French Quarter that though I had not met the person who invited me there it would end up well. I had no idea ...
I don't know where to go with this line of jumbled thoughts and the sun has come up. It is time to get ready for my day.
Walk everyday, you may be impressed at what it may accomplish.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think what you are doing is awesome. If you touch one life (which I'm sure you have) then you have accomplished something. I would love to see more media coverage on your journey. My daughter & I have been reading your posts since we met you in Destin. Hope to see you as you pass through Panama City. God bless