the Traveling Writing Room

On the Road Again

Atticus, the pup, Towanda, the Chinook, and me, the old lady, are on the move again and grateful. However, never far from my mind and heart are the sufferings of those innocent ones in the Ukraine. I feel as most of us do, guilty that my life is abundant in safety and the wondrous mundane while an Evil preys on others. Yet isn’t that the truth of just about every day? While I eat a hardy breakfast there are those who go hungry? But for a moment, for my own salvation and if there are readers out there who long for a reprieve, I write this silly blog. At the end of this narrative, I will be offering a prayer.

So, the Traveling Writing Room has been brought out of storage, tires pumped and on the road. I have people who laugh at me when they call me as I drive asking me where I am at that moment and I never really know. I know where I’m going and I know how I’m getting there, but at any particular moment I’m not quite sure where I am. Recently, I was asked that question and all I could tell them was, “Well, I just passed the Purple Toad Winery. Does that help?”

My thoughts are scattered as I write. My first stop was a three-day visit with a friend who was in the hospital. I hate hospitals. Who doesn’t right? There is nothing as energy- draining than long days sitting by a bedside. However, those three days were a bliss as I discovered that old friends could visit, giggle and tell stories of long ago in a hospital room just as easy as in a living room. So, we did. Between every blood draw and IV drip we escaped back to a time when we were teenagers on the beach, or in college meeting the boys who would become our husbands. When I left, we both felt better than we had in days.

As I continued down the highway I was confronted  with the truth that this country’s infrastructure is a mess. There has not been a highway I’ve been on that is not pock-marked with deep craters. As I entered Nashville on a five lane highway, my tires dropped into a canyon-sized fissure that knocked the screws off of my dinette table and the magnets off of my vent hood. Duct tape bandaged the dinette table but I’m still looking for where the magnets lodged themselves.

On my very first day out, trucks began pulling over to the side of the road in southern Illinois. The wind was blowing so hard it had gotten impossible to manage a big rig which explained why I was having a hard time holding Towanda between the lines. I gave up around 3:30 pm and found a campground for an overnighter, a cute little park just off the highway and my site was right on the banks of pond. I could barely see the pond since the rain was, by that time, coming down side-ways and in sheets. I got soaked hooking the electricity and water hose to the camper. I don’t mean just wet, I mean water-dripping-off my nose and earlobes kind of wet. The wind continued all night as did the rain, lightning and a little hail. Next morning, we began again. Still windy but less so.

For the next four days, I’m camping in Florida with alligators and poisonous snakes as neighbors. Haven’t seen an alligator yet, but I think I heard one this morning. So did Atticus. He jumped and then refused to walk on my left side near the swamp. So much for my body guard.  

I’ve met some old friends, also from Wisconsin, and we’ve been hanging out. I am blessed. Which brings me round again to those in today’s current war zone. I’m in awe of their courage and weep for this deadly disruption in their lives. I feel helpless. But as a Believer in the grace of God, I will petition Him for protection and mercy. Later, friends.

Holy Father, hear my plea. Hear the plea of many, many others as we ask for Your mercy upon those in danger. Only you, God, can change hearts. Only You, Father, can bring peace in the midst of fear. Only you, our Creator, can fight the evil and hatred that sometimes reigns in hearts that have lost sight of You. Send angels. Send protection. Show Yourself to those who are crying out for you. Let our hearts never grow weary and keep them tender to the needs and hurts around us even as we bask in what we recognize as Your faithfulness in our own lives. And most of all Father, let us not ever diminish the power that bended knees and contrite hearts have when it comes to help, to aid, to protection of Your people, and Your proudest creative work. Through Your Son’s sacrifice am I able to send this prayer. Amen.”

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