Friday, February 4, 2011

Keep Laughing, it makes the Devil Mad

This morning, I was somewhat surprised to hear my youngest tell grandma that he'd had a good time yesterday. My mantra through the whole day yesterday was, "Keep laughing because it makes the devil mad." I'd started off the day asking God to watch over the brakes. The night before, we'd noticed a burning smell and my hubby said it was likely just the brakes because he had just done them. I should have asked God to protect the entire truck!

The morning started off on the wrong note. Cleaning up bodily fluids always starts my day off the right way.  Joseph had a bad night with falling and tripping, then the morning brought its own troubles. After cleaning, I finally was about to shower and he came running in a panic looking for paper towels. He'd spilled milk. Let's not cry over spilled milk (or broken glasses and plates, as I have also learned!) I'd asked God to help us yesterday morning and prayed the brakes would be fine as we headed off  to see their Mito doctor.

As we made it over the causeway, we smelled the burnt rubber or burnt something. I had my oldest son call dad, as I am inept when it comes to car trouble.  As we turned onto Jefferson Highway, the car lost steering, but I was able to pull over in this boarded up store's small parking space. Gathering my thoughts quickly, I walked over to the store next door and asked if they would mind my parking the truck there until we could get back from the boys' doctor appointment. I also asked for the number to a local cab company. Since my cash supply had been depleted on the trip down, I borrowed money from my youngest son to pay our cab fare (I paid him back with interest once we got to an ATM machine!)  I was thankful he has a job! We caught a cab to the appointment..... all was well.

As I stood in line to register, my phone rang. The doctor's nurse wondering where we were. It was only 10:05! I explained we were registering and would be right up. The nurse said the doctor was wondering because we were usually right on time. Yes, and we would have been had the pulley and belt not come flying off the car! Just have to keep laughing. 

The appointment went well. I took a lot of notes and am still digesting. I didn't have time to think about any of it during the day. Well, at least not much thought was given to it in the midst of the other chaos.

Life really is what you make of it. We can choose to make the best of things or we can choose not to. We caught a cab back to where the truck was and I gave my oldest enough cash to pay the cab to get them all to the repair shop. I waited for the tow truck and met the boys at the repair shop. As I walked in the door, Joseph announced, "Hey mom! They have FREE soda here! FREE! As many as you want!" I reminded them all that free didn't mean you could drink as much as you wanted!

We called an aunt who drove across town to drive us across the street. The boys got a kick out of it. We were planning on eating lunch with her and chatting..... she ended up having to do something else. We saw her for a brief minute and it was good. In the end, we found this dive where the boys ate well. Matthew ended up getting a second shrimp po-boy and was very happy. I had a Muffalatta. Good food.  Life is good. We decided we wanted to find a king cake, so we asked a few 'locals" about the nearest bakery. If your are stuck and the food is good, it isn't all that bad, right? We walked to a bakery several blocks away -- it was cold, but the prize at the end was worth it. King Cake. Yum. We ate it at the auto repair place and shared a few pieces with other patrons.  Several hours later, the car was done and we headed out of town. Got onto the causeway and the car died again. 

Keep laughing, it makes the devil mad. When life throws this stuff at you, satan wins if you give in and forget to count your blessings.  I kept reminding myself that there could be a lot worse things in life. Matthew called 911 and was transferred to the causeway police. We followed their instructions.  The policeman came and told us to get back in the car, that he would push us to the crossover, adding that he would let me know when to get into the left lane. I didn't think about it until I got into the car. That is when I wondered how he would tell me. I told Sean to keep an eye on the policeman because I couldn't see him. The boys wondered out loud how he would alert us. That is when we heard the voice over the speaker say, "Move over to the left lane!" (This is God speaking! ha ha)

As we sat on the causeway waiting for a tow truck, we saw several people get pulled over and get tickets. One lady was really crying. We took some crazy pictures. My friend, Kate, arrived to bring us back to New Orleans. I was very thankful she lived so close to the causeway! Found an ATM to get money. Had the car checked out again...... ate Chinese food and headed back to Mandeville. Matthew was worried we'd get stuck again. We made it across safely.  Before heading out to Baton Rouge, I decided to eat my fortune cookie. I laughed so hard when I read the fortune: Learn to enjoy every minute of your life.

In the scheme of things, cars that don't run aren't such a big deal. Life really is what you make it. We had a great day-- good food, good friends and lots of laughter. God is good.

Here are a few pictures from our day:

The First Tow Truck

Matthew eating his Second Shrimp Po-Boy

Stuck on the Bridge

Just waiting for the Tow Truck on the Causeway

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