Expect the Unexpected

10:06 AM

That's my motto. Just this past Friday evening, I was sitting in this spot composing an email to one of my best friends regarding the unexpected nature of life...particularly in regard to its financial demands upon us. I was commiserating regarding the way life seems to spring things on us when we least expect it and when we certainly need it the least. Whether it be a set of braces that you weren't planning on dealing with for several more years or a new set of car tires that takes you by surprise.

Is part of growing up accepting the unexpected rather than lamenting it? I don't know.

For the past few weeks, every time I have walked past the left front tire on my car, it has registered in my brain that the tread looks low and I probably need to mention it to Kyle. So I did. But he's busy too and he's been traveling a lot. And tires are at the bottom of our thought list right now.

Well, Saturday morning, as we loaded up the car with our kids heading to Stuttgart for Grandma Alice's 90th birthday party, I see the tire and it registers once again in my head. Mild alarm, even. I comment on it again to Kyle. "Kyle, we really need to replace this tire!" Duly noted.

So just past the town of England, having left the buildings behind and once again emerged into an endless sea of rice and soybean fields, August is sleeping peacefully behind me, Brooklyn is gazing off into space almost asleep, I'm knitting and Kyle is listening to the Razorback/Georgia game when...THUMP THUMP THUMP THUMP THUMP...something is obviously wrong...in the general direction of the left front tire.

We ease off on the side of the road to inspect it. Although the tire hasn't blown, it isn't far from it. The tread is literally peeling off. No biggie, we know how to change tires. Although who wants to change one next to a dusty field being plowed with the 90 degree heat beating down on you? We jack up the car, start removing bolts and then realize - Audi tires come with one odd bolt that requires a special key to remove. The idea being theft prevention. However, somehow, we ourselves were missing this key. We unjacked the car, put the other bolts back on and limped our way slowly back toward the tiny town of England.

The first building we saw just outside of town was a Case III Tractor sales building which was sure to have tire removal equipment! The extraordinarily nice people we encountered at this building tried their best, but they didn't have the tool we needed either. So we ended up calling AAA and waiting for a tow to pick us up. The lovely people at Case III kept us entertained by giving the kids new hats and some seriously awesome tractor toys. Not to mention we received a big-time education from the local farmers on crops, machinery, combines, tractors...all in all, it was an extremely enjoyable time...if you have to be stuck on the side of the road waiting for a tow.

We did hate to miss Grandma Alice's birthday party, though. Happy belated birthday, Grandma Alice!

And now, we're in the process of trying to nail down a key to unlock that pesky last bolt, order new tires and keep on trusting that God is going to provide for all our needs. Praise God for AAA and free towing! Praise God for air conditioning and friendly folks at that store! Praise God from whom all blessings flow! And praise Him I will, for I know that He IS God and He has a plan for all this that will someday make sense!

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