Fortunes Lost

The first thing on my schedule this morning was to drive over to St. Paul Lutheran and play the organ and piano for their 9:00 am Service.  Now that I’ve grown all the more accustomed to the order of their service as well as their vintage organ, I’m all the less worried about making noticeable mistakes.  As I was leaving, I was thinking how much more comfortable I would be if I played there every Sunday, but I did request not to be scheduled more than I currently am.  The readings were meaningful and the sermon well delivered.  I’m never silent with my praises whenever someone speaks about St. Paul, because they truly are a delightful community of faith.

One of my appointments today was to show a home that’s in great need of updates, repairs, and a thorough scrub down.  It was one of those homes which reeks so bad within, that you can actually smell it when opening the storm door.  If someone would ever insist that I place a name on such a smell, I would likely say, “It smells of a great sadness and neglect.”  Certainly you’re now thinking, “Sadness?  How can he smell sadness?”  Well, when you think about it, likely the person living there was slowly giving up on those normal duties of keeping the home clean and up to date.  Often times it’s caused by physical limitations, as well as financial to where that person or persons are left to remain there until they’re forced their will to make transitions.

I’ve seen far too many instances where family members wash their hands of their responsibilities and leave the care of their elders to the State, and most certainly not to their liking.  The number of times I’ve been to nursing homes and hearing the stories from residents of their abandonment by families, you can’t help but think there’s that lingering sadness remaining in the homes they were forced out of.  So now you’ve heard my clarification on the “smell” of sadness.

I played a little hooky today by agreeing to drive a colleague’s employee to Minneapolis to catch a flight out East.  Thank goodness we left early enough to get there in time considering the slowing of traffic on the Interstate by road work, along with my having driven in the wrong direction when getting off 35E.  I’ll likely never forget that I have to go westbound on 494 instead of east.  It was a bit embarrassing for me when being pretty certain my passenger thought me ignorant of directions to their main airport.  I did say it had been likely three years since I’d driven to that airport, and not having made a permanent mental note at the time to where it was.  For years, I used always take 35W to 494, but when they opened 35E, it made it easier to get there.  From now on, I’ll remember the way.

On my way back, I was caught at a standstill for nearly a half hour by road work which was a first for me.  People in front and behind were getting really angry to where they were getting out of their cars to see what the holdup was.  Thank goodness it didn’t happen on our way up there.

Since I was running late getting home, I decided to stop at the casino and throw a couple of twenties away.  I was there for almost an hour because I was getting way ahead, and then way behind until the “house” won it all.  Oh Mercy!  The staggering number of people within, convinced me all the more, Diamond Jo’s Casino is making money from North Iowa and Southern Minnesotan’s faster than it can be printed.  I don’t even want to think about how many family fortunes have been lost in the gambling houses all across our country.  And for sure, they’re not even scratching the tip of their icebergs of coin whenever they choose to contribute money towards community grants and/or improvements.  After today, I’d say it’s a drop in the bucket compared to the amount Diamond Jo rakes in on a daily basis.

Tonight’s appropriate one liner is:  Leave at least one egg in the nest.

Joe Chodur

About the Author | Joe Chodur

Firstofall....JoeChodurreallydoesn'tliketalkingabouthimselfbutthisiswhatwehavefoundoutabouthim. more about: Joe Chodur

View page.