Should Have Been a Chauffeur

by | Nov 22, 2021 | Columns, Darke County News

Life's Reflections

Yes, I should have been a chauffeur.

Little did I know when I went into retirement I would be hauling people to their destinations, whether it be to an activity, a doctor’s appointment or some other occasion. But, most of the time, I feel good that I can be of service in a time of need.

I think I’m a good driver, but those who ride with me may not think so. Sometimes, my mind wonders while behind the wheel and I forget to make a turn or pass by a venue I was planning to visit, but I don’t get too upset because I can always pull into somewhere, back out and change direction.

That’s not poor driving, that’s, I hate to say it, an age factor creeping up on me.

With winter approaching, I’m hoping I don’t have to be on the roads much, especially if there is a lot of white stuff or some ice and sleet on the roadways.

Don’t get me wrong, I have driven in inclement weather and made it to my destination but I don’t want to take any chances now that I’m older.

I used to have to work some Saturdays and I remember coming home in an icy storm one time. I’ve driven through some white-outs and have even had to pull over during some torrential downpours. As always, I was never so glad to make it home safely in all my life.

One time, on a Saturday, I got to the north edge of Greenville, and got stuck in a drift. A couple of people stopped by, pulled me out and I headed toward Ansonia, following a car whose tail lights were easy to follow…until it turned off on a side road. I think on the rest of my trip, I was doing a lot of praying. It worked. I made it home….I just stayed between the utility poles, hoping there was no approaching traffic.

One night, I was out on assignment in Greenville. I knew it was calling for bad weather, but one of the persons who asked me to attend the event said it wasn’t going to be that bad and made me feel like I would be a wimp if I didn’t cover it. So, I did.

Guess what! It was snowing so hard I didn’t think I could get back to Ansonia, so I stayed in the office overnight and slept at my desk. Poor Jamie was home alone, but I made several phone calls to make sure he was okay. We both survived.

The next morning, I made it to my car about a block and a half way, which had a tad bit of snow around it due to the snow plows doing their work. The vehicle started right up, I let it get warm and then headed north. I never want to do that again, and haven’t had to so far.

Now, I am working from home and hopefully I can pick and choose my travels.

I always worry not only for myself but for my family and friends who have to get out and get to their respective jobs.

I have a deep respect for the road crews for what they do, for fire and rescue workers for their dedication and for law enforcement who undoubtedly get called out to help in various situations.

Believe it or not, I was young once and travel didn’t bother me as much, but once I had my son, I knew I wanted to be home with him where we could both be safe and sound.

The only time we were really separated was during the Blizzard of ’78. My sister, Bev, was my baby-sitter and when I went to get Jamie after work, I told her I was going to the laundromat. She said I could just leave Jamie there for the night.

Little did I know that we were going to have a snowstorm much less a blizzard. That was on Thursday night and following numerous hours of howling and blowing winds, my vehicle was snowed in until Sunday, like so many others were. I knew Jamie was in good hands and would be taken care of. I just wanted to make sure I’d get to see him again.

I wasn’t alone, however. A friend of mine knocked on my door later that evening and asked if she could stay at our place. She apparently got into a tiff with her “honey” and took off. But not to worry, she ended up going back with him. After staying with me, she must have thought her life wasn’t that bad after all. Just saying.

I’m certainly glad Jamie doesn’t feel that way. But why does he keep on asking me if I plan to do something on certain days? Is he trying to get rid of me? Inquiring minds want to know.

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Jamie and I extend our condolences to the families in the loss of: Ruth Parmenter Kistler, Jim Thiebeau, Bill Riegle and Thornton Miller.
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Please pray for these people: Ron Mills, Cheryl Gilmore, Larry Vititoe, Joe Arnett, Tony Liette, Jennifer Peck, Matt Hiestand, Kathy Swabb, Gloria Hodge, Jeff Baltes, Cory Meadows, D’Arleen Waymire, Judy Hoffman and daughter Shelly, June Moody, Albert Duncan, Cathy Melling, Scott Clark, and all of those who are suffering from other life-altering illnesses, including Covid and other variants associated with the Pandemic.
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Happy birthday to:
Nov. 15 to Adam Liette, Ryan Carpe, Karen Gibboney, Randy Mayo. Doug Lyme, Haleigh Luce, Gary Brown, Jeremy Pepper, Ryan Bayman, Elaine McMahan, Jacob Rismiller, and Chasity Rinderle.
Nov. 16 to Pastor Derek Specht, Chelsea Thwaits, Caron Stoltz and Rowena Stump.
Nov. 17 to Steve Mills, twins Caleb and Jacob Custer, husband/wife Goethe and Patty Rodeheffer, Jerry Neal, Shirley Marker, John Boehner, Shawna Meadows, Denny Barga and Grace Widener.
Nov. 18 to Debra Pohl, Mendi Burns, Kara Harter, Greg Whittington and Mona Stachler.
Nov. 19 to Pam Idle, Susie Brown and Evan Mann.
Nov. 20 to Kenny Edwards, Steve Mehaffie, Sondra Armstrong, Nina Barga, Dave Shellhaas, Jake DeMange and Dave Westfall.
Nov. 21 to Yvonne Runner, Tracy Wendel, Jacob Erwin, Dalton Burk and Phyllis Bennett.
Happy anniversary to: Dane and Linda Leeper, Jack and Jodi Smith and Robin and Jim Hesson, all on Nov. 20.
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Think about it: “The brilliant man is one who improves the lives of others without them knowing about it.” –Author Unknown

I am a Darke County native living in the Ansonia area with my son. I have been in journalism 50+ years and enjoy what I do.

Contact Darke County Now Media Correspondent Linda Moody @ lmoody@darkecountynow.com or 937-337-1955.

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