Sunday, January 6, 2013


I had the day before Thanksgiving off from work; but, I still got up at my usual time of "O dark thirty" to take advantage of the grocery stores being empty.  I hate crowds, so I find the luxury of sleeping in not so luxurious in the face of crowded supermarkets.  I was surprised at the dense fog that awaited me as I pulled my car out of the garage.  The weather man on the radio said the fog would not lift until noon.  I was forced to drive slower than the speed limit, the visibility not allowing me to see too far beyond my headlights.  As I wound along the small highway, I found myself a bit disoriented.  As certain "landmarks" appeared in the fog, my brain would readjust, mentally drawing a map of where I was along the route and adjusting as each known landmark suddenly -- and unexpectedly -- appeared before me.

I drove through a little town nearby: one of those quaint, old historic "townes" that offers the passerby a view back into an America of a bygone era: storefronts with porches along the road.  The town had put up its annual Christmas lights which shone so lovely in the foggy dark: white snowflakes attached to the old time streetlamps.  Nostalgia bubbled up inside me as I dreamt of "Christmas past" of my childhood.  The site was so lovely, I pulled my car over to snap a picture with my iPhone.  (The flash was reflected in the small particles of the fog -- no, it's not snowing in the picture above, but rather you're seeing the tiny droplets that made up the fog.)

I got back into my car and continued on to the grocery store.  I pulled onto a more lighted, busier thoroughfare, although the fog still created an odd disorientation even here.  As I pulled into the market's parking lot, I was struck by how the tall, bright lights gave an eerie glow to what was now an unfamiliar scape.

It turns out, I forgot that the supermarket is no longer open 24 hours a day.  I actually arrived about 10 minutes before opening time!  So, I waited a bit in my car, listening to the radio and peering out at my foggy surroundings.

The few moments of solitude caused me to reflect on my foggy journey.  I felt oddly confused and bewildered by the effects of the fog.  If it were not for the occasional landmark along the way -- a road sign, a traffic light or intersection -- I would have had a very difficult time arriving to my final destination. 

How often do we find ourselves in such similar circumstances in life -- our paths fogged with stress, hardship, loss, sorrow?  What "landmarks" do you have in your life that help point the way even when the going is unfamiliar and confusing?  Who are the lamps in your life that offer orienteering and guidance?  How do you stay on the right path when life blinds and disorients you?

Give thanks for those in your life who have built these lamp posts in the past and who today stand as signs along the path.  Life is hard.  Give thanks for the patches of light.  Give thanks for the Waypointers.

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