We live on a one-lane road, and there's a new house going in between us and the entrance. We received notice that the road would be blocked from 8:30 am on yesterday with a concrete pour, so at 7:30 I moved the car to a parking space past the pour, parking close to a fence so other neighbors and two friends who would be visiting later that morning would have room to park.
At 8:45 I walked down to the car, planning to head to my Pilates class, but unbeknownst to me there was a bolt sticking out of the fence, and it caught the edge of my front bumper. I was backing slowly, being careful to avoid the fence, when all of a sudden the whole front of my Honda popped up and off. Fortunately the cement trucks hadn't arrived yet, so I drove the car -- fenders flopping over the speed bumps -- back to the house. My husband was able to get everything back into position but all the plastic clips were broken, so we duct-taped the car together and called the insurance company; no Pilates for me!
The day was broken up throughout with visits from friends (to pick up a photo for an auction and to order another photo), calls to the insurance company and the body shop, a visit to the body shop, calls to our daughter to see when she might be home with a spare car, a visit to the physical therapist, and, at the end of the day, a makeup training session for the play that opens next weekend.
When I arrived the assistant director mentioned that the director was hoping I'd take pictures of the session, but I didn't have my camera with me, so I made do with my iphone. The results were less than spectacular, but they did manage to capture the event; this one was my favorite.
It was quite amazing to see the transformation of the various women who were willing to attempt the techniques that were being demonstrated for us. But more amazing to me was how relatively calm I was able to be earlier in the day, faced with the mess I'd made of our car and the inevitable monetary damages that ensued. I felt embarrassed and apologetic, of course, but I didn't feel shaky and worthless, the way I used to feel when things like this happened (the last time was in 1998 when I accidentally backed into my husband's car, slightly denting his rear fender; I was devastated!)
I'd like to think it's my meditation practice that helps me stay sane through all the complications -- and inevitable challenges -- that can occasionally arise. But maybe it's just age and experience; certainly I'm not ALWAYS this calm.
But yesterday I was looking through God is at Eye Level by Jan Phillips -- a much underlined and highlighted copy that has pretty much been my photographic bible for the last 15 years or so. And the first highlighted sentence is an exercise: "Take a picture of something that makes you feel calm." I suspect I may never have gotten past that first instruction -- it seems like all the pictures I take -- the ones I really love, at least -- have a way of making me feel calm; I think that's what people like about my work.
Clearly that one sentence resonated -- and tomorrow I get to go hear Jan Phillips give a workshop. I wonder what new wonderfulness she'll have to share! Mostly, I'm just hoping the duct tape will hold the car together until Monday, when it's scheduled to be fixed...