Monday, December 4, 2017

The Little Things

It's been a strange few weeks, filled with every emotion a human being can feel. We wrapped up a long, successful stint as oil field security guards and made our sincere and emotional farewells. We had VIP tickets (purchased months earlier) to the Nascar championship finale near Homestead, FL and were looking forward to attending. In the meantime my mothers health had deteriorated, so we decided to make our Nascar visit open ended. That decision entailed picking up and moving our burgeoning drone business, which was no easy task. We had set a date to leave south Texas that would leave us time to get to Tallahassee, Florida so that we could visit with my daughter and grand kids before heading into Miami. In the meantime; amongst the thousands of things we had going on, we were trying to complete the sale of our Hyundai Santa Fe and purchase of a newer cargo van. We completed the sale, but could not sign the Santa Fe over because the finance company was conducting an audit of the transaction. We completed the purchase of the van: which was a necessity to get our inventory moved and to grow the business. In a whirlwind last few days in south Texas we cleared out and packed two storerooms of drones and accessories into the van and RV, moved temporarily into a hotel (where our pickup truck was broken into), dropped off and had our 5th wheel repaired, had tires put on our 5th wheel, had the pickup repaired (which included a brake job), finally received our title and transferred the Santa Fe over (the day we were going to head out) and capped our last night in Texas off by having dinner with friends. Can you say, "Whew"? The next morning, less than 200 miles into the trip, one of our new tires went flat. Come to find out, the tire company had not bothered to change the old valve stems out. They said we never requested it. Who puts a new set of tires on any vehicle and doesn't replace the valve stems? We made it to our scheduled stop in Louisiana and rested for the night. The next day, around 1 p.m., our world caved in around us. My niece called and told me to get to South Florida as soon as possible. My mother had been found unresponsive in her bed and things looked grim. Before we could make any arrangements my mother passed from a massive stroke. I was devastated and driving was very difficult. Did I mention that, in the middle of all this chaos, a Sheriff decided to pull me over. He said he was a member of a drunk driving task force and that I seemed to be hugging the white line. Since when is that cause to pull someone over? Had it been any other day, without my mother so heavily on my mind, things may have ended differently. As it was, I was allowed to proceed without much fanfare and no ticket. We decided to skip our planned stop for the evening and headed straight into Tallahassee. My daughter had set up a reservation at a local RV park and we stayed there for a few days. In the meantime, we had had plans to try the local flea market and decided to go ahead with them. This flea market was not a "stand out" place, but most flea markets aren't. We both said my mother had to have been looking down on us as we had one of our biggest days ever selling drones. We drove to Okeechobee the next day where a friend had arranged a spot for us to overnight in. We set out for Miami the next day and soon after Missy informed me that a vibration she had been feeling in the left front was worse than ever. We pulled into a small gas station and a semi filled with sod pulled up. Thank goodness I speak Spanish because the driver of the sod truck knew little English. He offered to lead us to a tire shop he knew plus he had a family member that had RV spaces near Homestead! You would be right if you thought like we did; mom certainly had to be looking down on us. Even though that space didn't work out, we have managed to extend our stay at our original destination in Miami. We are now going about setting up our drone business in South Florida and have even opened a small store at a local discount mall. We are quickly learning about bureaucracy as we  endeavor to get a occupational license; needed to operate a business in Dade County.

As life goes on my mind frequently reminds me that I have no parents left on this planet to serve as mentors and guides. If you're like me your Mother occupied(s) a large portion of your life and that void can never be filled. I believe that power greater than us all created women with all the basics needed to survive in the world. However: there are those few that standout. They excel in all those qualities that so few of us have and most never achieve. Things like nurturing, patience, generosity, unconditional love and empathy; just to name a few. To have all that and go about your days demurely and gracefully is even rarer. Words can never describe my mother adequately; hopefully these capture at least part of who she was. I miss her terribly and am proud to have been her son.

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