Tag Archives: Puddles

Must We Mess with Our Cell Phones?

Image by Esa Riutta from Pixabay.

When my car and I swerve to avoid someone hypnotized by a cell phone, I secretly wish for a water pistol. Though, even if I shot cold streams out the window, would the driver look up, confirming zombies have not yet conquered Planet Earth?

Only if I soaked her/his phone.

Image by Michael Hourigan from Pixabay.

My generation did not allow rotary phones to tyrannize us, right? Though how many Boomers refused to leave the house, waiting for a special person’s call. …

Nowadays, I grab my cell phone too often. I do know better than to text around younger generation pros. With help-this-old-lady-across-the-street compassion, some with speed-blurred thumbs offer to assist me.

Poor, overworked thumbs need a break. In fact, we should give data use, phone bills, and ourselves a break. What cell phone alternatives can help me break the habit?

Hubby and I have discovered one way: holding hands. On walks, we radicals converse, laugh, listen to cardinals’ songs and luxuriate in autumn beauty.

Image by Lenny Rogers from Pixabay.

Friends may walk together, too. Having only texted for 20 years, they may need to exchange photos for identification purposes. Soon, though, they’ll discover the joy of talking with a real person.

Other suggestions:

Image by PublicDomainPictures from Pixabay.
  • Wave at passing drivers. Imagine your town if all drove like you.
  • Splash in puddles for fun instead of being sprayed while texting.
  • Mentally rearrange someone’s outdoor furniture.
  • Plant an imaginary flower bed at a plain house. Enjoy landscaping triumphs without an aching back and dirty fingernails.
  • If walking past an elementary school, thank God you’re not the old woman who lived in a shoe. Or the unnamed wife of Feodor Vassilyev, eighteenth-century peasants with the Guinness record for number of children: 69.
Image by Janusz Walczak from Pixabay.
  • While in educational territory, mentally recite U.S state capitals you memorized in fifth grade. Mrs. Baker would be proud.
  • Hop with one foot on muddy ground, so school kids think a single-footed alien visited.
  • Search for cars dirtier than yours. Write congratulatory messages on windshields.
Image by SD5432SD from Pixabay.

I offer final, unsolicited advice to young cell phone zombies: The love of your life could pass while you’re playing Super MarioTM. Or watching cat videos.

Wouldn’t holding that special human’s hand — maybe forever — be much more fun?

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: What could you do instead of fiddling with your phone?

Rendezvous with the Rain

“Rain, rain, go away. Come again some other day!”

Some preschoolers let weather spoil play-outside plans. But one warm, rainy spring day 60 years ago, my brother Ned and I begged to play outdoors. Mom, seeing no lightning — and desperate for peace — dressed us in bathing suits she’d sewed. Mine was the most beautiful suit in the world, with ruffles on the rear.

At the neighboring playground, we danced through God’s sprinkler system. Ned and I soared on swings, welcoming rain’s laughing pitter-patter. We experienced the joy of mud, chocolate-brownie-batter stuff we smeared on the merry-go-round and watched the rain scrub clean. We worried less about our own state. Mom almost locked us out.

Later, having sworn off mud baths, I still loved awakening to rain rhythms plunking on the roof. I sometimes avoided sibling anarchy with an early morning walk in the rain. At 10, I didn’t run outside in a homemade bathing suit with a ruffled butt. Instead, I ducked raindrops until I found an umbrella under the swing set, where my brothers had conducted parachute jumps.

I strolled along wet, black roads where iridescent oil jewels gleamed. Silence ruled the slumbering village’s lush lawns and rainbow flowers. I breathed newly washed air and listened to raindrops skittering across my umbrella. Sometimes I talked to God. Sometimes neither of us said anything. I counted it a major triumph to return before my family awoke. We had managed this secret rendezvous, the rain and I.

During young adulthood, love often turns to hate. I attended a college under a huge rain cloud with a permanent “on” switch. I spent a bundle on umbrellas because dastardly thieves stole the hundred I forgot in cafeterias.

Noah floods with 30,000 gloomy students wielding 30,000 umbrellas didn’t charm me like my childhood walks. Elevators, where we absorbed each other’s wet-dog fragrances, became danger zones. When the film, Singin’ in the Rain, was shown on campus, the student body flew to California and staged a sit-in at Gene Kelly’s house.

Now an (ahem!) mature adult, I’ve shed youthful habits. I don’t lose umbrellas in cafeterias because I am the cafeteria. Loading groceries into my car amid a deluge, I gnash my teeth and weep.

Yet even on this dreary April day, rain calls to me.

I probably won’t play in the mud. Nor will I wear a bathing suit with ruffles on the rear. But before the nearby school erupts at three, I grab my umbrella.

I know where deep puddles hide. Where wet tulips and daffodils will listen to quiet, spring songs in silence.

I know the perfect route for my rendezvous with the rain.

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: Do you love a rainy day?