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Life, Living and Loving: Mrs. Feve’s Memoir Project: Green

20 May

So, green. When I saw the email alerting me that Mrs. Feve had posted the second prompt, my mind starting thinking about green and the first thing I thought about was rebirth, that moment when winter is done and over with and things that were dormant during the cold months were now awaking up – grass, flowers, and trees. My next thought was about summer and my brain immediately connected to the most greenest thing it could remember.

Our youngest son had decided to drop out of college to join the US Navy after figuring out that he could continue his college education and the government would pay for it so off he went to the Great Lakes Training Center just north of Chicago but before he left, we sat down and had a conversation about basic training in general and what he could expect, what the purpose of basic training was and, for him, um, when they tell you to do something – and no matter how dumb it sounds – just do it… and don’t question it unless you like doing pushups.

Yeah… it was a lesson I learned during my time in USAF basic training and I probably still hold the squadron record for pushups. Live and learn.

He made it through (learned the same thing I did, by the way) and we wanted to be there for his graduation ceremony. I’d been to Chicago and its environs quite a few times and my first thought was for the three of us to hop on a plane to O’Hare, rent a car, get a hotel, and watch our son move on to the next phase of his training…

Except his mom didn’t want to fly. I spent a lot of time looking at train and bus schedules but they weren’t going to get us there when we needed to be there so the only thing to do was to drive. I hit MapQuest to find the best route and, holy shit – we’re looking at a 13 hour drive! We left home around 10pm – a couple of hours before I had planned to because I wanted to literally get the show on the road and off we went.

By the time we hit Gary, Indiana, I was feeling some kind of way because I’d been driving the whole time. The sun was up and there was, oh, hmm, maybe a two-hour portion of the drive beginning with leaving Ohio where the only thing to look at was corn.

Lots of corn. So much green as far as the eye could see. It wasn’t as if none of us had ever seen a cornfield… but nothing like this. Mile after mile, on both sides of the road, nothing but the vibrant green of healthy, growing corn… and it was strangely mesmerizing and somewhat hypnotizing as I sped along and even that had me thinking that I’d been traveling all over the country as part of my job and I couldn’t remember seeing green like this before – and looking down from 30,000 feet didn’t seem to count nor, I realized, did what I was seeing any real justice.

Life. Green meant life. Life is full of experiences and wonders just as much as it is full of potholes – and that thought came to me because I narrowly missed running through a pretty good-sized pothole. I barely caught the edge of it, bounced us around (woke up my road partners) and despite a slightly hairy moment, the green was still there, signifying life and growth.

While the 13-hour trip was full of conversation and other things to keep us occupied (and to keep me awake), nothing dominated our talk more than all that green of the cornfields that seemed to go on forever. Hell, when we got to the hotel – 12 hours and 40 minutes after we hit the road – we were still talking about it.

And were still talking about it once we got back on the road after attending the graduation ceremony and having dinner with the newest member of the family to serve our country. I didn’t do much driving on the way home; the drive to Chicago, it turned out, seriously kicked my ass and I’m sure I slept through that two hour stretch of road that was home to green and the likes none of us had ever seen before.

Years after that trip, all that green was the one thing that really stuck in our minds about our journey. Green is life. Vibrant. Full of wonder and hopeful expectations for good times to be had and experienced. Green is everywhere. Life is everywhere. It reminds you of the inherent beauty of the world around us, takes your mind away from the chaos of every day life to refresh and renew your perspective on things, can refresh your spirit. We say that we should take time to stop and smell the flowers and it’s good advice so the next time you’re out and about in your travels, look for green… and remember how good it is to be alive.

 
4 Comments

Posted by on 20 May 2020 in Life, Living and Loving

 

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4 responses to “Life, Living and Loving: Mrs. Feve’s Memoir Project: Green

  1. Mrs Fever

    20 May 2020 at 17:21

    I know EXACTLY that green-drive stretch through the heartland — I was born and raised in the Midwest and my brother was at Great Lakes for his Navy BT. It *is* mesmerizing, and if you aren’t used to seeing the endless rows roll past, it can be a little awe-striking. 🙂

    But oy!!! Thirteen hours! That’s a tough drive! No wonder you napped on your way home. 😉

    Thanks for playing! I learned something new about you: I hadn’t realized you’d been in the air force. 🙂 THANK YOU for your service.

    Liked by 1 person

     
    • kdaddy23

      20 May 2020 at 17:38

      It was my honor and duty to serve, thanks!

      Liked by 1 person

       
    • kdaddy23

      20 May 2020 at 17:40

      Yeah… 13 hours. Piece of cake… until I got to the hotel. The women, who were supposed to drive as well, spent more time snoozing and not driving but I expected that. All that green, though…

      Liked by 1 person

       
  2. May More

    5 June 2020 at 06:10

    I adore the colour green for the reasons you mention. It reminds me that life goes on.
    May 😉

    Liked by 1 person

     

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