Monday, April 28, 2008

"We Hope This Didn't Ruin Your Day."

Well, it didn't. But it sure did change things up a bit when someone from the land of "milk and honey" tried to "get my money"...

Last Saturday my craving for a country ride was quelled when Steve and the kids agreed that we could try a new bike trail in rural Pennsylvania. Around 30 miles Northwest of Lancaster we found a great rail trail that allowed us to ride through gorgeous farmland and beautiful woodlands. The trail head parking lot was in a very small town named Cornwall. Manicured lawns and Mennonite girls riding bikes in dresses set the scene.

After 20 miles of upgrades and downgrades, warm breezes and occasional breaks filled with the reading of "River Town," we returned to the car to find something we hadn't expected in this place...a broken side window on our mini-van and a missing purse.

Apparently the police didn't expect this in their small community either. When we called them they were absolutely livid. They explained that this had never happened here before. They encouraged me to watch my bank accounts for activity and to let them know what stores the cards were used in so they could retrieve the in-store cameras. They were obviously ready to get these individuals off their streets. After collecting all the necessary information they proceeded to clean up the glass and tape plastic over the space of the missing window. The kids have even greater respect for the men and women in blue, given their empathetic, good-Samaritan ways of treating us.

In all, this was a sad situation that had many ramifications (including a yucky new license picture for me, new direct deposit account numbers, and a day and a half of missed work), but we used it as an opportunity to show the kids how to react to adversity. We didn't freak out or rant and rave. Instead, we handled each frustration methodically. We figured, why add insult to injury? No one was hurt...everything could be replaced...and those buggers didn't get a wooden nickel since I had given Steve the cash from my purse before the ride in case we stopped on the trail for a snack! Realizing how situational attitudes can be passed on to offspring allowed us to keep our cool.

So "no" this didn't ruin our day at all. Monday (run-around-and-straighten-out-all-the-mess day) was not our favorite but the memory of a beautiful family day in rural Pennsylvania has no tarnish.



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