Peace for your Path...

"peace. it does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. it means to be in the midst of those things and still be calm in your heart." (unknown)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

a beautiful journey

I am sentimental beyond belief over hand-written letters, my kid's art work, beach sea glass and old family photos. But regular "stuff" - not so much. That's why my grief over the decision to finally trade our thirteen-year-old car yesterday truly caught me completely off-guard.

Meet Black Beauty.

Our teenage son was not even walking when she first joined our family in the late 1990's. She faithfully carried him first in his car seat and then his booster seat on countless trips back and forth to preschool, kindergarten and elementary school. When he was finally big enough to ride without a booster seat, she promised me it would be OK. When I carpooled other friend's kids and drove on school field-trips, she promised me she would protect those children as well.

Much later, when our son was nearly as tall as me, she was there for our first, nervous side-by-side conversation on the way to middle school. And her air bag did NOT spontaneously or mysteriously deploy (thank you especially for this, old friend).

Our Black Beauty carried us on many, happy family vacations. We strapped a cargo carrier to her top when we moved our aging dogs with us from KY to FL, and she never once complained. Later, after both had moved on to Heaven, she drove us home again while our son cradled his brand-new puppy in his arms. She's hauled bicycles, surf boards, golf clubs, soccer gear, kayaks and so much more. Not one time did she ever leave me stranded alone and away from the house. If she had a flat tire or needed a battery, she always let me know while we were safely still in the driveway. Beauty helped me to avoid many potential accidents, and in all those years, we were never involved in even the tiniest fender-bender. 

The other day I had a nasty little exchange with an older woman driver in my neighborhood. I won't recount the details here, but I do understand now that part of my anger at this driver was related to my knowing that my days with Beauty were numbered. I felt this woman refused to see Beauty's true worth and instead saw only her 176,000 plus miles of weathered paint and dirt. Nor, could she seem to comprehend the preciousness of the cargo - my son and our dog - that Beauty was carrying for me at that moment. 

So, on Monday, I spent some unhurried, prayerful time telling Beauty thank you for myself. I removed the sea turtle, butterfly, dove, cross and love chimes that were draped around her rear view mirror. Afterwards, I stopped to look at the reflection of my own eyes for several moments, thinking of all the two of us had seen on Life's highway. Under the driver's seat, Beauty gave me one final gift - a tiny piece of amber sea glass. It must have dropped out of my pocket after one of our many trips to the beach. It's crescent moon shape found a perfect resting spot here beside me at my writing desk.

Afterwards, we headed off to car line pick-up, the grocery and then one final sunset together...

It's been a very Beautiful ride.


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awesome pictures...

michelle said...

on Saturday feb 11th, black beauty touch the eyes of myself "michelle" & my son "glenn". Black beauty now has a new home, up in Sebastian, florida, and will be well loved & well taken care off. She is in great loving care of a owner who loves toyota's, and also works for toyota.

Robin Bradley Hansel said...

Hi Michelle and Glenn,

Oh! You have made our day :)

What wonderful news. Thank you so much for sharing it with us.

May you have many (many) happy years together...

Peace for your Path,