Daze Of My Life/As Luck Would Have It

by Kenneth B. Lourie

Boy, did I get lucky a few Thursdays ago (did I?). Due to the timing of two doctorís appointments scheduled on this particular day, the veterinary orthopedist for my cat, Smokey, at 10 am in Gaithersburg and the geriatric internal medicine primary care physician for my father, Barry, at 2 pm in Silver Spring. Given that I live in Burtonsville in the northeast corner of the county, work 27 miles away in McLean in Fairfax County, and had special transportation issues to consider, (the cat in a box and the father in a wheelchair-accessible van) I decided to phone-call work from home and the road and my parentís house that day-before, during and after my various stops. And I was rewarded for my effort/sacrifice, big time!
Not only did my cat not need surgery (potential hind leg amputation that day); his amazing recovery from a 10-day old hip socket fracture continued unabated, we were also able to get my father through his pre-op surgical screening with minimal hassle and discomfort. And even more significantly, while working at home between 11:30 am and 1:00pm (after the first doctorís appointment but before the second) I was notified over the phone by two separate, presumably unrelated, extremely enthusiastic tele-marketers that I had won, through no effort or initiative of mine, a three-night, two-day Wintergreen Resortsí weekend get-away and had also become a finalist to receive a brand new 2005 Lexus sedan. Wow! I couldnít believe my good fortune.
Here I was doing the Lordís work, so to speak, tending to my father and my cat, attempting to juggle work to accommodate their appointments (and to maintain my own business), when low and behold, Iím a winner, not once, but twice: A free vacation and nearly a free car. Other than good health, unlimited tax-free income, a close family, good friends and a 95 mph fastball, it doesnít get any better then that, at least in a family newspaper.
Itís really funny how things work out sometimes. There I was, betwixt and between, stressed and strained, watching the clock and marking what little time I had, trying to fight off the fear of the worst case scenarios concerning both my father and my cat, when out of the blue two phone calls ring that could possibly change my life or at least enhance what there is of it.
Who doesnít need a complimentary long weekend out of town to recharge his battery or a free luxury automobile? What better way to deal with the bitter than to sample the sweet? And all because I stayed home from work and answered the phone when it rang. Who would have guessed that in the middle of the day, when most adults are typically working outside the home, that of the hundreds, if not thousands, of these kinds of ďcongratulations, youíre a winnerĒ phone calls made that day, that yours truly would receive not one of them but two? Itís almost incalculable, inconceivable even.
Iím sure Iíll be receiving paperwork soon to confirm my awards. I canít wait to drive my new car to my free vacation weekend. What a way to decompress!
Now if I can continue to receive more good news concerning my father and my cat, I wonít be so disappointed should something unexpected happen to my two major awards.
Lourie is a regionally syndicated columnist who resides in Burtonsville, MD.