#437 Petrol cashier’s kindness

 

My gratitude came to me today at the insanely early and God-forsaken hour of 5:45am.

Godly indeed. Blessings certainly came my way.

Are you one of those people, where upon waking up, sudden thoughts and ideas and reminders, just pop into your head?

Pop, pop, pop!

Well as I was getting dressed for work this morning, I realised astutely, and begrudgingly, that I was fairly sure I had to fill up the car with petrol.

Damn it. The cons of working so far from home. I knew the tank would take me there. But the one time I tried pouring petrol in the city before my trip home, I was stuck in further traffic for so long, that I swore I would NEVER do that again.

I would have to do it then. Now. 5:30am.

Which I’ve done heaps of times before. No biggie. My car dash confirmed what I dreaded as I got in – yep, need the juice. Off we go, driver.

Standing in the freezing cold, rain whipping about me despite the elevated shade, it didn’t occur to me. Then, as I finished filling up the tank, it still, didn’t occur to me. Then, getting my wallet out of my bag, still, it didn’t occur to me.

As I opened up my wallet to get my card out, to make my walk across the petrol station to its indoors, I stopped.

Shock. Horror.

My card wasn’t there.

And just like that pop!

Another memory. 15 MINUTES TOO LATE.

The night before I had swapped the money Hubbie had in his wallet to take with me to work, for car parking, and put my key card in his wallet, just because, in case. I knew he probably wouldn’t need it, but you know.

I was being nice.

I didn’t even have a credit card. He had that too.

(Face palm).

I went back to the car, and got my mobile too. I didn’t know what I would do, other than I think I needed all the back up and technological gadgets I could get, for some unknown reason.

As the man at the counter called out “number 6?” with a smile, I grimaced.

“Yes, but I don’t have my cards! I’ve left them at home, and…”

I started rattling off random things. Should I call my husband? Should I get him to drop off the card? Both ideas were inconvenient – if I went home I’d most likely have to leave my driver’s licence with him, and that was if the cashier let me drive home. The other option involved Hubbie having to take baby girl with him to the petrol station down the road, just so he could give her scatterbrained Mum a freaking card from his wallet that HE DIDN’T EVEN NEED THAT DAY.

I waved my phone about. “Can I somehow pay, with this?” I racked my brain, realising that I didn’t even think our credit card had a mobile app, and even so, I didn’t have the card number on me!

And then as I was rattling off things sporadically, I came to some kind of end result…

I showed him my bank app, and asked “Can I pay the business through my account?”

Well, it wasn’t the business account I paid. But the man had given me his personal account number, and I transferred the funds into that. He didn’t explain, but my perception was that he would fix up the till, from the money I had put in there.

He held up his phone when it was done, and said “it’s gone through” with a smile. I didn’t step forward to check, as there was a queue of people in front of him waiting to pay for their items the normal way. I just thanked him profusely and left quickly.

But I wondered. Should I have taken a photo of his phone’s image, ensuring I had proof I had in fact paid? Would he report me to the cops and keep my money for himself?

Would my writer’s mind just shut up???

It’s sad that as we get older, we are often told to watch our backs, be wary of other’s intentions, and make sure we are not taken advantage of. I reminded myself of the facts – I had needed his help, and he had come through for me, going out of his personal way to do so.

And then, I said “breathe SmikG. This dude saved your arse.”

So, at 5:45am, I was grateful to the petrol guy. I think that station has gained a constant income from our family, from now until FOREVER.

#417 Easter egg hunt

One of the most rewarding parts of the day…

was not when we had hot cross buns for brekkie, that had been baked fresh in the oven minutes earlier (they were delicious but this new oven I’m working with, actually, OLD oven, burnt the bases of all my buns so that they had to be sliced off – minor annoyance)

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was not when I surveyed the satisfying end result of 2-3 days of baking and preparing, all my lovely cakes presented on pink plates to be taken to family and friends (I spent a lot of that time also being grumpy, stressed and rushing about like a mad woman)

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was not when we arrived at my parents place later in the day on time (we had been driving around for hours already)

was not when we cheers’d as a family and had a good swig of the strong stuff to commemorate yet another beautiful family Easter dinner together

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… But, it was in the morning, during our Easter egg hunt with baby girl. Because even though we did it with her last year on Easter morning, she did it then in surprised awe, like she was still working things out. It was more wonder at why all these little eggs were in our front yard, more so than excitement.

Today was much, much different.

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Hubbie scattered little eggs around the front and back yard, and then showed baby girl where he saw the Easter Bunny hop about, thereby directing her to the right spots.

She carried her green Easter bag with her, excitedly filling up the bag with chocolatey goodness, exclaiming in excited happiness, popping the eggs confidently into the bag, and listening ardently as her Dad and I seriously spoke about where else the bunny had hopped to, and what else we might find…

and then we came to the ‘piece de resistance,’ which, hidden amongst a bush, was this

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A Frozen-themed tin chest. Filled with more chocolate eggs of course.

Seeing that smile on baby girl’s face, why, we could almost do an Easter egg hunt every day, just to see that beautiful face light up with happiness the way it did.

Happy Easter All 🙂 Hope yours was a special and memorable one.

#409 Freeway Comparisons in Photos

6:20am, Saturday morning. Driving to work.

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3:50pm, Saturday afternoon. Driving home from work.

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I love the serenity and calmness of the first shot, yet in the second photo find a severity that is exciting: that ‘hand’ of the storm coming down from the heavens, ready to unleash some major damage on us mere mortals in a matter of moments.

Those ‘moments’ came in a massive downpour only 10 minutes later.

I like to appreciate the little things in the every day, and seeing the stark contrast between dawn and storm, going to and from work, is something small to look forward to.

Yes, even when it is a work day.

The scenery, set amongst the cold, grey freeway… just reminds us how much more powerful and vast Mother Nature is. No man-made structure can top her strength, influence and impact.

And again, the photo-taker on this day was my trusty in-car robot assistant… 😉

#392 Quick reflexes

So, I’m glad I’m here writing this to you.

I’m so glad I’m alive.

And no, I’m not being melodramatic. I was nearly wiped off the road today, and my quick instincts saved me.

A colleague at work mentioned those ‘Sliding Doors’ moments after I told her the harrowing ordeal, and that just freaked me out more. Imagine if I had been going a bit faster, the guy could have, he really could have…

…Rammed into my left side and thrown me against the concrete wall of the Monash. Doing 100ks on that freeway, and then having to slam on the brakes, and swerve very abruptly towards the concrete wall, is NOT FUN.

I wondered: imagine? What if? Was I meant to get into an accident? Did I avoid getting mashed up – my real fate? Was that my ugly destiny?

I can’t think like that. In fact, I actually can’t. As a glass half-full gal, I believe that what is meant to be, has been, and that is, I miraculously avoided a huge collision and definite injury because, I’m meant to be around here for a while longer.

Call it fate. Call it intervention. Call it timing. Call it circumstance.

I’ll call it quick reflexes. And I am bloody well grateful for it.

 

#377 She performs ‘Magic’

Keep them young and carefree as long as you can. That is my underlying theme in raising kids.

They will have plenty of time to ‘adult’ later in life.

I don’t see any harm in letting them believe in an over-sized bunny that hops around leaving Chocolate eggs for Easter.

I don’t see any harm in letting them believe there is a fat man with a long white beard and white hair, who squeezes through your chimney/climbs through an open window, and after indulging in some carrots/cookies/milk, leaves you some much-desired gifts.

Let them even believe your little white lies “We have to go home NOW because the park is closing for lunch.”

“The beach is closing! See? It’s getting too cold so it’s closing.”

“If you splash in the bath too hard the spiders will come.”

But don’t even suggest the fantastical idea of boogeymen or scary things lurking under the bed. They definitely don’t exist, but if Santa and the Easter bunny are, this seems just as likely. Anything that leads to an interrupted nights sleep for your littlies, don’t EVEN. Don’t even go there.

Keep them naïve. Innocent. Unknowing. Fresh. Keep them untainted.

Let them even believe, in MAGIC.

I started this a while back, when baby girl fell and hurt herself. She is fascinated with band-aids, but don’t try to put one on her! That is a worse-r hell than the injury she has sustained herself. Don’t even.

So I had to get creative. My forte. I love to imagine, and create, and send wild thoughts into the atmosphere.

“Mummy do Magic,” I had said to her. “Doo doo doo doo doo” like the sound of an old-school phone connecting, as I brought my lips close to her wound. I patted it with alternating hands in quick succession, letting out a “ch!” sound with a big blow, a big kiss and a dramatic pull-back of “Magic!”

She LOVED it.

Every time she was hurt or sore, Mummy had to do Magic. I’ve studied psychology. I know all about the placebo effect. I was fascinated to see the Magic actually working, like Magic I guess (!), on baby girl. Of course, anything serious and I wouldn’t even suggest something like that, I am a Mother, I DO KNOW THE DIFFERENCE. A scrape requires Magic. Something more serious, a doctor.

Even if so, some ‘light Magic’ would help ease the woes on the drive over I’m sure.

Since all we are dealing with is little scrapes and bumps, Magic has been a saviour.

And then, when one day I was sore, she performed Magic, on ME.

Awwwww:)

She does it regularly and often now. She will perform Magic on herself. It’s like a self-help tool to assist her in moving on. And it actually helps: she does MOVE ON.

Tonight as I sat on the couch talking about how I wasn’t feeling the best, and how my lower back had been sore yesterday, she promptly finished up drinking her nightly milk, pushed me forward, and tinkled her fingers against my back.

“Doo doo doo doo doo” she went, kissed my back, and then went “Dash!”

Dash, is Magic.

Funnily enough, she has also extended this to when I am mad, and have road rage. I am a much calmer person on the road with baby girl in my car, but still, I will say “what are you doing? Seriously? What a silly, silly person!”

“Can you drive? Come on, move it!”

“Mummy is very angry right now, there is a very cheeky driver on the road.”

And she’ll go “doo doo doo doo doo” a kiss, and “Dash!”

Problem fixed!

I find it hilarious that she does this on me, and in varying situations. She now actually believes that Magic will solve almost anything. Sometimes I will be unwell and I know I am incapable of moving on from it immediately, and when she does Magic, I think ‘how do I get out of this one? How do I fake being healthy again? For the sake of believing in Magic?’

But, it makes me smile… and for a moment I forget I am sick/sore… and I guess that’s kind of Magic in itself, isn’t it? 😉

 

 

#367 The calm after the Partays

Thursday was a full on day. Kinder for baby girl. My 5 hours ‘off,’ were actually crammed in with everything and anything I could think of.

We had visitors over that night, my cousins.

Friday night (yesterday) we had an engagement. I slept 4 hours. Got up to work today. Groggily.

We had a birthday on tonight. Drove to the other side of town. Drove back. I don’t know how many hours of sleep I’ll get tonight. I’m working tomorrow, again.

And although there is one more ‘task,’ to tick of my to-do list, that of work for the weekend, I sure am glad that the festivity part is over, at least for now.

Don’t get me wrong. I love heading out, getting dressed up, having fun, socialising, and watching baby girl thrive amidst it all.

But I haven’t stopped. I’m tired. I still need to work. We’re all getting under the weather.

We just need to stop and take a moment to breathe. In peace.

And so, I am hopeful, that finally the calm has come. And I’m so grateful for it.

#346 Driving in to work

I think you might just be killing the gratitude game if you, like me, are finding things to be appreciative of when driving to work.

What?! Happy and grateful, going to work?!

It’s true, it’s true. And what was on today’s special forecast for gratitude you might ask?

Sunrise, foggy landscape, and music.

Simple, but sooo awakening.

First up. I loved these photos my ‘car personal assistant’ took while on the M3. The first is of the pretty pink sky, and in the next photo you can even see the fog along the horizon.

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Of course, my ‘car personal assistant’ didn’t really do the scenery any real justice, you just had to be there to see it for yourself. But, you get the picture (pun totally intended).

Second, the music. It was 6am, and all the music coming out of FOX FM was pretty damn good. It wasn’t just all repetitive commercial crap: I found a few current boppy ones I liked, yes, but the playlist interlacing all the recent stuff seemed to be from a few years back, and they were all songs I liked. The songs that had me bopping and singing along even before I had any breakfast in me, were:

Cosby Sweater – Hilltop Hoods

Shape Of You – Ed Sheeran

Firestorm – Kygo ft. Conrad Sewell

I Don’t Wanna Live Forever – Zayn ft.Taylor Swift

Shine – Years & Years

She Wolf (Falling to Pieces) – David Guetta ft. Sia

The whole point of this gratitude journal is to show all the different ways and places that gratitude can be found… and if you can achieve that on a cool Saturday morning on your way to work, after only 5 hours of sleep… then I think you’re doing ok.

😉