Thank God for cell phones….with GPS

So I decided to go for  drive today.  It was light out, had just filled my car with gas and had nothing but time on my hands.  What could possibly go wrong?  Well….I started west on this side road/mini highway and just began driving and driving.  There were random houses but nothing terribly exciting.  I turned around and then came across this other road that headed north (or so I thought).  I thought to myself, ‘this should take me back toward Norman, no big deal.’  After ‘miles and miles’ of what seemed like an endless road, I got a weird feeling and then thought, ‘crap, I have no idea where I am.’  I would come across random subdivisions with nice houses….but for the most part, not a lot of life if you know what I mean.  I finally pulled over and opened the GPS on my iPhone.  I put in my apartment from current location and then hit the Start button.  I starred at where I was….and where Norman actually was and then couldn’t help but laugh (and call myself an idiot).  As I headed the right way (finally), I became a bit calmer and enjoyed the drive and countryside once again.  When I saw the mileage sign for Norman, I smiled and thought, ‘ahh yes, home…now this looks familiar again.’ 

No harm was done….but word to the wise…don’t leave home without your phone!

Selfishness

Many things can annoy me: slow drivers, mini-vans, lazy people. But the one trait that I would say is definitely my biggest pet peeve: selfishness. I can’t stand when people are only concerned with themselves. All they care about is me, me, me. They complain because something didn’t go their way. They don’t think of others but yet expect you to be there for them. Unbelievable…

When I’m feeling down or in a crummy mood, I know that if I do something for someone else, my mood does a 180.  It can be something as simple as forwarding an e-mail to a friend that means a lot to you (as I did yesterday only to get a sweet reply back) or sending a hand-written note.  Knowing I may have made their day or given them something to smile about makes me smile.  It energizes me to think of others.  I sent a note with our softball coach last week as they headed to first round of regional play.  It was full of my ‘musings’ and observations about the players and their season.  I didn’t write it for recognition…I wrote it because I wanted to do it.  I knew their coach would appreciate reading those comments.  I handed it to her last Wednesday…they got home on Sunday but I didn’t see her until today.  The first thing she said before giving me a hug was “I meant to say thanks for that letter.”  I touched her arm and said, “You’re welcome.  You’ve been a tad busy.”  I was having an okay day up until then…but then I couldn’t help but smile when she walked away.  I put someone else ahead of me…and yet it came full circle and benefitted me too.  One simple act created a ripple effect and that’s what life is all about…at least, that’s how I choose to see it. 

Some people just don’t get it….they don’t get that it’s not ‘all about them.’  I’ve got a friend at work who, when we’re trying to pick a place for lunch, will point to her head and say, ‘uh hello, do you not see the halo…it’s my turn to pick.’  it’s just a joke between us….I’ll just roll my eyes and laugh.  That’s funny but what is NOT funny is when people walk around daily thinking there really is a halo over their heads….with this chip on their shoulder thinking everyone should be at their beck and call.  If something goes wrong, they were certainly not at fault and couldn’t have done anything to change results….someone else should’ve done something.  Why people can’t be more positive and find the silver lining…how they can grow from an experience is beyond me…life is too short to be so self-indulged.  I’m so grateful that people describe me as sweet, caring, thoughtful. Nothing is more touching than that.  I’m blessed to be around people that call me friend…that know they can count on me and I can count on them.  I love giving our softball coach a hard time…but the same person that makes me laugh is also responsible for me having my moments where I can see her in a different light….an appreciative person who isn’t above telling her supporters thanks for being there for us.  I love that a simple note made her grateful…grateful to have people supporting her team.  It makes me appreciative of how I was raised…a way that told me that we’re put on this Earth to make it a better place.

Sadly, you can’t force someone to be selfless….they have to want to generate that feeling of gratitude and do for others what they’d want done for them.  You can only learn how you don’t want to be…

The Bachelorette premiere

I’ve got a confession…and yes, I know I may get some ‘oh please, gag me’ from the males who read this.  So, what is it….I watch The Bachelorette.  As I write this, the premiere with Ally is on right now…I’m having to make notes about which guys I like so I can compare with a friend at work who also watches.  So, stay tuned for my notes…..

An adventure awaits

Today I booked my flight to join my family in Baltimore, Maryland.  My cousin and his family live in Frederick so we decided to go out east to visit him.  Everyone but me had booked their flight so I checked that off my to-do list this morning.  I’ve talked about it before but every time my family gets together for a vacation, it always turns into an adventure.  We get lost.  We run out of gas.  We have a flat tire.  Something always happens.  For instance our Europe trip in 1997….it was my oldest sister, me, my Dad and this same cousin we’ll be visiting.  Dan (cousin) took some time off of work to play tour guide.  He had been stationed in Germany for a while so we trusted him….this is where it starts to get interesting.  One episode was where we were standing on the boarding area for a train.  Dan looks up at the sign and says, “okay, this is the right one…get on!”  We’re standing inside the car, huddled together, unsure of what we’re doing….this lady next to us starts yelling in German or some other language.  We all look at her and then at each other, silently thinking, ‘lady, if you’re looking to us for help, you’re worse off than we are.’  Dan,, meanwhile is looking at a train route map.  Being the man he is, can’t admit he was wrong and instead just says, “Get off, get off, get off!”  So we all hop off the train and end up back where we started.  We also made the mistake of letting Dan order food for us.  We pull up to this McDonald’s (still in Europe, mind you) and we give Dan our order.  We pull around to the window and then Dan looks at us and says, “um, I think I just ordered fish sandwiches and coffee.” 

So, in a matter of a few months….we’ll all be together again…only this time there will be more of us.  I can’t help but look back on the Europe trip and laugh until I start crying.  I love memories like that.  Our trips are never boring, that’s for sure.  I know something will happen in Maryland…and I know we’ll all laugh about it for years.

My first tornado

So yesterday I was helping out the booster club for softball as they held its annual golf tournament.  I was assigned to the 16th hole to let people know they could play from women’s tee for a donation.  Leading up to the day, we knew bad weather was in the vicinity.  The day started cloudy with a little drizzle of rain but nothing steady.   It was even cool in the morning.   The golfers teed off at 1pm and the round was going along fine.  I really had a posh job…it required me to sit in a golf cart and just wait for people to show up.  I had a great time visiting with everyone and even got to share some tips with our softball coach.  When she took a practice swing, I had to tell her, “don’t swing it like a bat, Coach.’  I kept teasing her until she finally said, ‘fine, pro…show me how it’s done.’  Thankfully, I hit a good shot…and she and her asst. coach went about her day.

The afternoon progressed on and I looked to my left and noticed the sky was getting a tad darker and more weird looking.  Around 4:30ish, I sent a text to the girl in charge of tournament and asked how many teams had finished.  A few minutes later, the siren went off and the navigation system in the golf cart flashed “Lightning in the area, proceed at your own risk.”  I turned the golf cart on and headed toward the clubhouse….along with most everyone else.  We went inside and were chatting a little bit.  Then another guy on our committee got everyone’s attention and said, “Excuse me, we have all been asked to go downstairs as severe weather is headed this way.”  We stood outside a little watching the sky…then the rain started picking up.  We ducked inside the garage and stood waiting to see what would happen.  Next the power went out and all you could see was the lights from cell phones, blackberry’s and iPhones while people checked in with their kids, babysitters and loved ones.  Debris began flying around the course…about 15 minutes later, we were back in the reception room and finished out the event with silent auction winners and team scores. 

After everything was packed in the various cars, we headed out.  I rode with the girl in charge of tournament and she was taking back toward my car.  As we headed south, we looked toward the east and saw the sky still very weird.  She was worried for her dog who was alone at her house…along with the house itself as she lived right under the eery sky.  The rain had picked up by the time I got to my car so I dashed from hers to mine and headed west toward my apartment.  I couldn’t help but shake my head as I drove home.  The west side was fairly clear…the east was worried that the storm might hit them and I was thinking about what to have for dinner.  Once home, I sent Kaycee (aforementioned girl who drove me to car) a text asking if she made it home okay.  She said that her house had minor damage but a block before her street, those houses got hit harder. 

The day after experiencing my first tornado is now almost over…but naturally, as if it was a big college game played on Saturday, the tornado was the topic of the day.  As I reflect on the event that possibly branded me an “Okie,”  I have to say that I was glad to have been around friends and colleagues yesterday.  It had been an entertaining and fun day up until Mother Nature took over (Toby Keith and his wife played in the tournament…actually, we played on his course).  Growing up in Texas, I had never experienced more than a bad rain storm…now I can say that I was told to ‘take shelter’ for a tornado…my heart goes out to all those whose homes were damaged and those who lost loved ones.

Simply good people

I pulled into the softball stadium  today, locked my car and started toward gate.  I then turned back because I decided to leave my jacket in the car.  I fiddled with my keyless entry tab and then just used my key to open the door, threw my jacket inside and re-locked my car and headed toward entrance.  Fast forward about 3.5 hours and I was exiting the stadium.  My car was one of about 4 left on the dirt ‘parking area.’  I looked out at my car, stopping to realize that my trunk was open.  I thought to myself, “Holy crap, I must have accidentally hit that button when re-entering my car earlier….”  I continued walking and then it hit me, “sh–, my golf clubs are in there.”  I started jogginig toward my car only to realize when I got there that everything in my trunk was intact.  Granted, they’re not Callaway or PING golf clubs, but still….the trunk was wide open.  I was lucky but I like to think it’s a testament to the people I’m surrounded by….simply good people.

Recap of the week

So, I have gotten involved in our softball program this season by donating financially and with my time prior to each game.  I only made it to a few games last year but promised our coach I’d make many more this season.  I’ve really enjoyed  them and getting to know the players and gaining a better understanding of the game.  This past Wednesday, we got revenge on our in-state rival OSU.  It was a sweet game and felt so good to beat them.  There had been some unresolved ‘issues’  and some emotions got heated between the two programs unnecessarily (this relates to “You know we have your back’ posting).  Everyone involved with our program was antsy for Wednesday to come and when it was all said and done, we were so proud of the way our girls handled themselves. 

Another note on softball….I volunteered to play in their golf tournament that will be played in about a week that is one of their fundraisers.  I hadn’t been to the driving range in about a year so I knew I needed to practice.  I went out on Tuesday night and could already feel my rustiness on Wednesday.  I talked with our former golf coach about what I’m doing wrong.  She said my stance was off so hopefully that will eliminate future soreness all over. 

It’s now Saturday and I’ve got a full agenda.  We have an ‘open house’ for our fans to walk through our various facilities so I’ll be heading up to work to help with that shortly.  Following that, I’ll head to the softball game and then cap off the day with our women’s gymnastics banquet.  I’m okay with today being crazy….I’ m getting to do what I enjoy and that’s what life is all about.