“Run my dear, from anything that may not strengthen your precious budding wings. Run like hell my dear, from anyone likely to put a sharp knife into the sacred, tender vision of your beautiful heart,” ~Hafiz
Welcome welcome to FindingFelicity! Thank you for stopping by and taking a gander at our lovely posts, reading through our wonderful quotes, viewing our photos and watching some of our vids. We’re, or I’m, very thankful for it.
Enough mush and gush. I do not want to be the one to over share here. That would just make me look like an idiot. Heaven forbid.
I finished reading Dear Daughter by Elizabeth Little (which is a good read BUT in my circumstances mayhaps, I know that’s not a word, not the wisest of my choices), then I read a few articles about Brittany Maynard. And I thought about my mother. Gawd isn’t it the worst? My mom wanted to fight to end, she didn’t want to leave…and here we have this young lady choosing to end it.
I sat down to write. Took a reign check. This would be one f**king sad post. Annnnnnd that’s not the point of this whole bloggy-thing right? You eating the sandwich I’m making? Picking up what I’m laying down? Driving the car I’m selling? That’s when I took the sacred Hafiz advice and ran.
Task: To do something more up-lifting. So I…
- read an article about a 29 year hearing for the first time
- flipped through some puppy photos on Pinterest and
- fantasized about some new tattoos,
- watched a few Honest Trailers and How it Should’ve Ended
- …a few minutes watching SNL with Bill Hader
- read an article about a few teens creating energy with the heat of their hands
- took a break and stood up with my hands on my hips (because standing that way boosts my confidence), read that article here.
And now? I do feel a tad more upbeat. Lord knows my life hasn’t been the prettiest or funniest as of late, but in the most cliche way possible, it doesn’t mean I can’t guffaw every now and again. I mean who doesn’t need a good guffaw? It’s the best kind of medicine there is out there.
Instead of writing existentially, I’d rather write nostalgically you know? In a positive sense. Here we are then with a story from my teenage years. Enjoy!
In 1993, Papa bought a Volkswagen Euro-van equipped with stick-shift and six seats for us girls. We all fit in quite snuggly, each of us having our designated seat. Mine was the back left seat, Kara’s the back right, Théa’s the middle left and Basja’s the middle right. An excellent seating arrangement. My mother rode shot-gun and my father (Papa) drove.
We had this lovely gem of a vehicle for a good fifteen years. Kara and I learned to drive on a six-seater, standard, maroon coloured, 1993 Volkswagen Euro-van. It had a back up beeping sound…just kidding. Had you there didn’t I?
Our town, Port Perry, came to know our van. We were a standard fixture. After all my mom was prominent in our little Port Perry, Lakeridge Health Hospital, and Papa was “famous” because of a little green energy fiasco. So our big-little van was quite well known. Kindof.
Life on a farm is interesting and were I to organize my thoughts, I’ll bet my growing up story would differ vastly from the norm. But who wants to be normal anyways?
Back to the 1993 Volkswagen Euro-van. I learned how to drive on this hulk of a van as well and soon the time came for my G2 Driver’s Test. Imagine me, this little 16 (around 2007) year-old with this van, about to prove to a lady who always wore sunglasses no matter how much the sun didn’t shine, that I could manoeuvre this 14-year old standard van. The lady came out of the testing office, chewing gum, bright pink nails and of course those damn sunglasses. But I’m peppy. I was a rare 16 year old.
“All-right, this is your testing vehicle?”
“You betcha!” I winked and gave the Euro a little pat-pat, silently sending up a prayer that it’d behave throughout the test. Sometimes its old-age shone through, no matter how well Papa took care of it. Sometimes, the two middle chairs shook loose, sometimes the sliding door didn’t slide, sometimes the gear-shift didn’t shift or the clutch didn’t quite…clutch, sometimes the horn didn’t honk. No matter.
The thing still had forward motion on its side.
“Okay,” she said and proceeded to the back of the van, “You hop on in then and we’ll check that everything is in full functioning order.”
I shot a look skyward. Rolled my eyes and wondered whether I should break the news to this lady. I glanced over at Papa. His eye-brows were raised. I shrugged and thought what is the worst that would happen? Right? We weren’t moving, it’s not like we’re going to crash. Never fear, father dear. This would not end in vain. We’ve come here for a purpose and that was for my license. I did that thing cartoons do when they’re about to toughen up. Thought to myself “Ain’t no thang.” Actually gave the lady a thumbs up like this:
We got through testing the left and right back signals. The front signals were perfect too. This was the easiest test I’d ever taken.
“Okay everything looks good.”
“Alright, so let’s get started then?” I asked ever hopeful.
“Yes, just beep that horn of yours for me first and then we’ll get on the road.”
Now, looking back on those words I could’ve just laughed at the sentence itself. But no. At the time only one thought passed through my sixteen year-old brain, “Would she noticed if I made the horn sound myself?” You know? Like if I’d pressed down the horn button and made the noise myself. It took me a minute before I shook my head and decided against it.
So I sent up another quick prayer/wish that maybe the horn would work just this one time for me please?
I sucked in my breath. Time needed to freeze at that point…but it didn’t.
The lady snapped her gum and clicked her pen, “I know you’re nervous but the faster you beep your horn, the faster we can get out there.”
Again, now thinking back on the conversation, I’d just have a laugh at the consequences of merely beeping a horn. Ahaha. But honestly the tester was wrong. I wanted to show off my skills. It was the horn that was holding me back. Not the fear of the test. It was the horn.
I pressed down with all my might and even shut my eyes for effect, puffed up my face willing it to just make one single sound and for a brief moment…
There was nothing, “Our horn has been broken for a good many years.”
The sunglasses were up on her head and she was staring at me with a worried crease in her brow, “Okay, so that means you can’t take the test. You’ll have to come back with a suitable vehicle. Are you ok?”
I wouldn’t get to show off my mad, 1993 Volkswagen Euro-van skills!?!? You mean after all this build up; it’s the horn? A horn? I mean aren’t there other things? Ugh, the disappointment. It must have been etched on my face.
I mean I get that it’s a safety precaution. I get it. But I was bummed. I…was…good…at driving that thing.
“What if I told you I could do the test horn-less, I’m just that talented.” I used my hands to emphasize how serious I was.
She patted my shoulder, “A horn is important. For your safety and for mine.”
About 20 minutes later, Papa asked me what went wrong and I burst into tears and through my tears I cried “Why isn’t our van functional?”
“What do you mean? It drives! It’s done an excellent job over the years,” Papa replied. His eye-brows were half-way up his forehead, his eyes were so wide. I could have laughed at that point. The van creaked and the two centre seats started to shake loose. My father down-shifted and clutch didn’t catch; and instead of looking over at my incredulous expression, he stared forward as we were resigned to coast towards an upcoming intersection. I gave up the staring contest.
The silence was oh so silent. The light turned green and Papa released the break, we inched slowly forward, “Maybe if we lean towards the windshield, we’ll move faster?” I asked. We sat and after a minute we leaned forward.
A car behind us had the nerve to honk their horn. Papa and I turned to give the driver a deafening stare…after all that’s about all we could do.
[sigh] I miss that big-little van.
Us happy people gotta stick together.
Giving won’t bring my mother back it will let someone else keep theirs. Please check out blood.ca to find a clinic and give.
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