The anticipated debate between Carrie and myself regarding the appropriate time to leave for the airport ended in my favor. As such, four hours pre-flight we left for Hopkins International (and the wrong side of Florida).  Brother Bob was having a birthday.

Everything happens for a reason, I’ve concluded. And while they needn’t be, the reasons are often revealed over time. (Or so I think).

Something’s going on out there. There are no such things as coincidences. Or so I think.

Did not our father’s death at 59 compel me to grow up? Did not our mother’s outliving him two decades plus give Hal and I time to bind all ties? Indeed, did not the marathon of Aunt Helen — the years H and I nurtured her — did it not yield growth, context, and the greatest sense of community?

The landscape of my rear view mirror is broadening —

Have I not met exactly the right people at exactly the right moments through my years in recovery? FOR THAT MATTER: did I not meet Stuart and Walt and Alan and Bobby and Ermine and Arthur and so many others at precisely the right times in my life … permitting each to bond with me in the innocence of my youth and stay with me through this semblance of a renaissance?

Moreover, had Dick not travelled to Cleveland that specific 2012 weekend, had he not been seated directly across from me in that bulky party of eight, had he not been positioned right then and there to ask me for a post-breakfast ride down Chagrin to his mother’s — would he ever have thought of me with his sister?

I didn’t see it then but I see it now — in retrospect — how the fates played out.

(FINAL EDITOR’S NOTE / LITTLE KNOWN FACT: Carrie had absolutely refused to go out with me when her brother called her four years ago.  He urged her, nonetheless, to read this site before ruling me out. The rest, as my father would say, “is history”.

What though, if I’d never written? And she’d never read? And we’d never …

Ah, but something’s going on out there, and there’s peace in that knowledge. For too long I thought “seeing was believing”. ‘ Turns out it was just the opposite.

The lady at security smiled. “Perfect time to get here,” she told us some four hours ‘ere our return flight to Cleveland. Carrie’s eyes rolled as I reveled.  Most of all, however,  my gratitude for the richness of this world could have filled a six-foot chest of drawers — an armoire, let’s say! I’d tripped, stumbled, and fallen over time, but at some level, indeed, I was up from dysfunction.

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