I love lamp…?

The little ironies of life never ceases to make me laugh.

Yesterday, most of Milwaukee was under a winter storm warning. It rained all day and then when the temperatures dropped around 4pm, it started to snow. Boo was working from home, and so I was left to fend for myself through rush-hour traffic on slippery roads. I’m a pretty decent driver in bad weather, so I made it home without any mishaps.

We had planned on having a potluck dinner with our house church later that night, and by the time we left the roads were mostly cleared, although the wind was picking up and the snow was still blowing. Everyone in our house church takes turns hosting potlucks, and on this particular evening we were meeting at a friend’s house in the Third Ward. Jason is also a good driver in bad weather, so, again, we made it down there safely and had an amazing time eating delicious food and sharing some of our struggles and victories in the past year.

We got ready to leave around 9:45pm, and as we were walking towards our parked car with our heads bent against the wind and snow, I was thinking of how we had managed to get through the storm without any accidents or other unfortunate events. And here’s where the irony comes in:

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Yes, that is our car. After driving around in crappy weather all day, the worst mishap had occurred while we weren’t even in the car! We had parked near the corner, and the lamp post had blown over in the high winds and taken out our back window! Yikes. There were no tire tracks showing that someone had hit the post; however, the bottom of the post was seriously rotted and we are 99% certain it blew over on its own due to this.

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We walked out with a two other couples, both of whom stuck around to make sure we were alright. The couple who had hosted the potluck came outside as well. There were wires lying in the snow on the sidewalk, and the light was still laying on our car, so we obviously had to stick around for awhile until the fire department/electric company came to clean up the mess.

Our friends not only opened up their doors and stayed up to hang out with us, they also lent us one of their cars so that we could get to work today without having to worry about getting a rental or taking the bus. Jason drove our car back home (poor guy!) and we’ll have it assessed by our insurance company, hopefully sometime today. Until we get it fixed, we’ll be taping up the back window with plastic, ghetto-style. Ha!

I could be upset. I mean, of all things…and there is for sure going to be some hassle with the city/electric company, whom we feel should be responsible for some of the damage due to the fact that the post was in terrible condition to start with. And standing outside in the blizzard taking photos of our poor car and then having to scramble to clean out the garage when we got it home so we could put it inside wasn’t a great way to end the night.

But as we finally tumbled into bed after midnight, all I could feel was thankful.

Thankful that we weren’t in the car when that happened.

Thankful that nobody got hurt.

Thankful that we had such amazing community there with us when it happened.

Thankful for our friends for keeping us warm and for being so totally gracious by lending us their car overnight.

Thankful that we have good car insurance.

Thankful that we have savings to cover emergencies like this, even if we end up having to pay for the whole thing ourselves.

Thankful for a good night’s rest in a warm bed, and for our cozy home.

Thankful that tonight, after work, after shoveling, I can relax for a few days. I can wrap my gifts and drink hot tea and enjoy my homemade beef stew and cookies.

It’s so strange how interacting with people less fortunate changes everything about how you view life. All I could think about was how hard something like this would be for someone who wasn’t surrounded by amazing friends. For a single mom out shopping with her kids, to suddenly have no transportation, no options, no warm place to wait. To have to figure out bus routes and schedules last minute. To worry about finding the funds to cover the damage, or to maybe not even have insurance because they couldn’t’ afford it in the in the first place. Because the reality is that many, many people in my city are in situations very much like that, or worse. When I think of how much wealth I truly do have compared to others, it takes a lot of the bitterness out of unfortunate events. It even helps me laugh a little bit about the irony of it all!

 

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