Thursday, August 11, 2011

Your Destination is on the Right

Whenever we travel, as we recently did to pick up my son from his internship in Illinois, we have come to rely on Lola. Lola is the GPS in my husband's phone. Yes, he named her. Lola is temperamental. At least, we like to say so. Clearly Lola is just a GPS without feelings - a program to help us along the way. You know, just an application.

I have the courage to type that, but I would never say it out loud because it seems to me that Lola can actually hear me. Makes me nervous. Of course, I know that we call that anthropomorphism: attributing human qualities to things that are not human. But Lola sure seems human. When she gives us directions, she is insistent about our following them. When we don't, she reminds us with an insistent frequency that we are going the wrong way. She says, "Make the next legal U-turn."

I like that Lola is concerned about what is legal. She doesn't just say, "Recalculating route - turn now!" like a certain terror in a famous commercial on TV does, making the driver crash into parked cars. (Love those commercials. Mayhem was never so much fun.) She is cautious, concerned, we think, for our welfare. When we don't listen to her well-ordered instructions, she reminds us until she is certain we have gone too far for help. She may recalculate a few times, but eventually, she'll stop. That's when we get a little musical tone. Upon hearing that tone, my husband inevitably says, "Ut oh, I've made her angry. C'mon Lola, don't be mad!"

We laugh, turn in to get our gas or take a break or grab coffee - whichever reason we broke her carefully calculated set of directions in the first place - and "wait for her to calm down."

Is she really upset? Of course not. (I think.) But it feels that way sometimes. Especially after miles of hearing her tell us to "go straight for 117 miles, then make a right onto" this or that road. Often, our response is, "Yeah, I'll remember THAT after 117 miles" which is why we have her. Or, "Shut up, Lola." I sometimes get the feeling my husband just likes telling a female voice to shut up. Not sure.

The greatest words we hear Lola say, however, are these: "your destination is on the right." Why it is almost always on the right, I can't say for sure, but it usually is. Right or left, long journey or short, we love getting to our destination. The journey is often full of humor, long stories, deep conversations, yes. Still, there is nothing like getting there; nothing like seeing the people you have traveled so far to see, or the event you've been waiting to be part of for a long time.

This destination, this day that I've been waiting for, I have finally reached. I e-published my first short story yesterday, late last night, actually, on Smashwords. I was nervous, as I sometimes am when I think Lola really is angry with us. More nervous than that. Terrified that my story will be overlooked, ignored, or worse, mocked. Yet, when I woke up this morning, it was a different world. I am a published author. However I got there, wherever I've been before, I have reached that first, longed for destination. God has answered a prayer long ago prayed just when I was ready for His answer. I hope my story gives glory to His Name.

What a ride it's been. What a journey ahead! I cannot express how excited I am - it just can't be put into words yet. To all the "Lolas" in my life, my writing partner Robin, my husband, my daughter ... thank you for helping me get there. Think of all the places we can go now. Wow.

Have you reached your first mile-marker? Are you there yet? Tell me about your journey - I would love to hear about it!

If you would all be very kind, I would love to hear your thoughts on my short story, Sanguis Dei, available now for free download on Smashwords. Read, review, let me know what you think. And thanks!


  1. I am excited for youuuuuuuu! It is a marvelous story and you are a skilled author!

    Time for Snoopy dancing!

  2. Thank you so much for all you do and all the encouragement you give me!

    Snoopy dancing, indeed!