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Heartwarming Small-Town Romances and Thrilling Mysteries

Mount Ranier National Park
Mount Rainer National Park

For the most part, ignorance is not bliss and could even be dangerous. But Hubby and I experienced a time when ignorance was bliss. We were camping in Mount Rainer National Park, the land of no electronics. There was no cell service and no wi-fi areas. We were completely out of touch with the world for two nights and a day. This left us time to see the beauty of Creation. Mountains, valleys, canyons, and wildflowers. Creeks, rivers, and water falls. Stars, planets, and the moon. Peaceful scenes. All in 3-D. You can’t get that on a TV screen.

When we had to leave that peacefulness to continue our journey, we finally reached a town with barely enough signal to make a call, but it was sufficient for setting our phones off in a flurry of beeps and buzzes. The most alarming was that Hubby’s mom had tried to call us multiple times. We immediately knew what that meant. Hubby’s dad had taken a turn for the worse. He had fallen and broken his hip and his frail body could not take the strain. He passed away very peacefully, in his sleep.

Our first reaction was shock, then slight panic. We were in Washington state. How do we get back to South Dakota? We started driving, keeping to our planned route while we talked about our options. Drive back? It would take more than 24 hours of solid driving time. Fly? The airlines would gouge our savings. Drive part-way, then fly? Too much time and the airlines would still gouge our savings. In the end, we decided this was the reason why we had saved money for emergencies. And this was an emergency. So we paid a huge amount of money to the airlines to get us back to South Dakota from Portland as quickly as possible. Thanks so our son who lived a couple of hours away, we were able to find a place to store our Tajmatrailer and truck without worrying about them.

Just like everyone else, I hate funerals. It reminds me of my own mortality and how time is flying by. But it also reminds me to enjoy every moment and make each moment count for something because life is very short. At the same time, funerals bring families together and acquaintances are renewed. Memories are revived and shared again. Caring for one another is strengthened. Isn’t it a shame that it takes a death to motivate us to celebrate life and family?

So our carefully made plans had to be changed. Circumstances required it. As with anything, you do what you have do, pay what you have pay, to be where you have be. Save for emergencies and spend it when the time comes. That’s why you have it.

Hubby and I are back on our schedule and back with our truck and Tajmatrailer. We hope that we will be able to travel as planned, but if other circumstances come up, we will weigh our choices and do what is best. I hope that in the future, we don’t forget to enjoy each day and look for joy in the time we have with each other and with our families and friends. Those plans should never change.

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