July 16, 2013, Tuesday. I think I met one today. A member of the Frequent Perfect Day Club (FPDC). This is a little like being an airline frequent flier who wracks up tons of free miles — however many miles fit in a ton I don’t know. Neither do I really know the FPDC member whose demeanor and words especially caught my attention today as he scanned my few groceries through at Safeway, our only grocery store in town.
I have been checked-out by this man many times before. Usually I am captivated at the very creative and unusual way he approaches and accomplishes his job. He has a kind of artistic FLOURISH (I think pronounced “flure- EESH”) as he swings items past the scanner and way, way into the air as if he is pushing a child in a swing, before he deposits the item with a skilled profound precision into its plastic grocery bag with a fascinating twist of his wrist.
Yet today as he half-danced through my few items he made a comment to me in some kind of context I don’t remember. Oh, yes. Now I remember.
Everyone in this area has been without any kind of cell phone service since near the dot of 7:00 pm last Saturday, July 13th when one of our very unusual heavy rain and thunder storms did something drastic – somewhere – what and where none of us know. We just wait patiently or impatiently to have what we need and are paying for returned to us.
Knowing I was going to miss yet another opportunity to talk to my daughter 1,700 miles away today had me in a bit of an impatient and disappointed mood just as I passed by Mr. Super Scanner, who announced to me, “Nothing really matters. Life is good no matter what.”
My own internal clock must have stopped, or skipped a beat or a click or whatever it is that clocks do as those words fell off his lips. Ten thousand OTHER responses went through my mind before I could simply accept that this gentleman might just happen to exactly know what he was talking about.
I could have asked him (in a different lifetime) what kind of a mother he had. I could have complimented his mother right then and there because as I collected together all the various impressions I have been gathering of this quite unique man over the years I have never known him to be even the slightest bit different than he was today. He is just too happy to have been raised an abused kid!
So – I think I really DID meet this man today – across the counter – just as he very well might be FREQUENTLY if not most of the time: HAPPY!
What a concept!
And one thing that is very important to me as I look back at this experiential snapshot is that I SAW his happiness! It is a known fact that the regions of the brain that see and respond to happiness in other people’s faces and voices stop working when major depression is present. This is one of the ways that depressed new mothers harm their infants. The mothers actually DO NOT SEE the expressions of joy in their infant’s face and therefore do not respond to them. Without being responded to by their mother infant joy can simply fade away, leaving “scars” on the newly forming happiness center in an infant brain that last the rest of the infant’s life.
The same is true for all depressed adults — and the fact that I SAW that man’s joy – at the moment my internal “clock” stopped means that his joy GOT THROUGH TO ME!
YAY! This very likely means that my present (dare I say recent?) bout of depression is probably lifting, and it may well have been that man’s gift of sharing joy at that moment that kicked me to another level of healing. So wonderful!
I also know that we are having record-breaking monsoon rains here in the Arizona high desert. It has rained long and hard 14 of the last 16 days including the rain that just ended that was 6 1/2 hours of the most gentle soaking rain I have seen here in years. These rains are resurrecting the desert and all life in between heaven and earth. These rains are healing.
Many of the unusual storms have come in the middle of the night with thunderous, earth and house shaking bolts of lightning that don’t usually appear in the darkness here. A friend told me she watched one a few nights ago that hit the earth in the west and then traveled sideways through the billowing black clouds east for over 50 miles.
Which now reminds me of two stories. Sorry, this post will grow longer than I anticipated because both belong here!
First. It was my complaint to this cashier about loss of all of our cell phone service through last Saturday’s storm that prompted him to pause for two long full minutes from his scan dancing as he told me what I mentioned above. As the line continued to grow astoundingly fast with people impatient (perhaps) to get through the 15-item speed line, Smiley Super Scanner told me in the small gift of his story:
A long time ago in the desert in the middle east very little rain came to the earth. But when it did, even if it took 100 years to get there, tiny little creatures emerged from the earth to thrive in their LIFE.
One time there was a huge earthquake and a volcano. It broke apart and smashed away a big mountain behind which there was the ocean. The ocean crashed in and flooded what had been the life-plain of these little creatures, who adapted to the changes in their life and in time became —- SHRIMP!
Ha ha ha ha!!!!!!
He caught my attention!!
The other story, as stories come and go at our small town’s Laundromat Cafe, was told to my friend who of course had to tell me today, by an elderly couple who came in to wash clothes earlier this week. Perhaps it was that same Saturday night storm that took out cell towers (or whatever, none of us know) that they were talking about.
That night this couple lay curled up together asleep in their bed when BOOM!! Wide awake! All of a sudden water began cascading from their ceiling. This man said that he had put his own roof on 8 years ago and had done a darn fine job. NEVER before had there been a single drop of water leaking through this roof – until that BOOM!
Horrified and terrified the couple next watched water boiling up through their floor boards. Water then came down through their walls with such volume and force it gushed out from under the baseboards and spewed upwards like a fountain.
Well, the couple did what any sane people would do. They wrapped their arms around one another, hid under their covers and waited for the coming of the end of the world.
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