Life is beautiful.
Often times, it has come to my attention how perceived small events can remind us how life works in our favour when we allow it to, when we let go, when we go with the flow – going with the current opposed to struggling against a flow.
This is a true story; a very simple one; extraordinary in its simplicity.
It is one which happened in my life within a forty minute time span last Friday, yet in its essence, it is a stamp in my heart how easy life is despite the perceived hiccups.
As I immerse into the detail of this story, it is a massive reminder that life does conspire to assist us in all manners when we are open to it.
I live on the east coast of Galway, Ireland; in a beautiful area called Renmore, near the beach and a four kilometre walk into the heart of the city. Over two weeks ago, my car was vandalised, the roof was slashed open, and since I do not have indoor parking, I called a friend Brendan and asked whether he could store my car in one of his sheds, until the point that the Mazda repair garage would have received the new parts and were in a position to mend it. This was important, the west of Ireland tends to magnetise lots of rain towards it, I had to find a covered area for my motor unless I wanted a swimming pool on its inside in addition to the already mounting costly repairs.
Brendan did not have ‘spare’ indoor storage, but he knew a friend who had. My car was taken to a farmer’s shed on the other side of the city, in an area called ‘the Tuam Road’, about a six kilometre distance from where I live. The idea was that it would remain there until I was ready to collect it to take it to the garage. It remained there for two weeks.
Last Thursday, two weeks after this event, I got a sudden abscess in one of my teeth. My dentist is in Cork (a three hour drive from Galway), so as the pain mounted I proceeded to find a more local dentist who could see me at very short notice. This led me to a place in Galway called Oranmore last Friday at noontime, a little village about another five kilometres south of where I live. I got a taxi there. Buses are fairly impromptu and non- regular in the Irish countryside.
This was when things got very interesting. I had no sooner finished with the dentist when I got an urgent call from the Mazda garage, saying that if I could get my car into them within the next hour they would have it ready for me in a few days, yet if I was unable to have the car to them by 2pm on that Friday I would have to leave it until the following Tuesday morning as they would have to prioritise another car, man power was short with them at that moment due to the holiday season.
At that point, there was a distance of about twelve kilometres between myself and the car, and even if I did reach my car on the Tuam Road in time, I would have had to drive it back towards the city to the Mazda garage. Options: I could get a bus from Oranmore into the city and then another bus out to where my car was being held, or I could grab another cab directly to my car. First of all, I truly cannot stress how infrequent buses are in the Irish countryside and secondly even if I got a cab to take me to this farmyard where my car was, the farmer who held my car did not have a mobile phone so I had no way of contacting him directly then, and he had held the keys of my car.
Here is the massive truth, NONE of this seemed like a big deal to me at that point, it was only on reflection later that day that I realised that had I mused over in my mind about all the logistics at that time that my logical mind would have told me that there was little hope I could manage this, in fact the little obstacles presented would have implied it was almost impossible.
But instead, I went with the flow. I made a decision instantly. I didn’t think twice. I followed a gut instinct and called Brendan to ask him whether there was any way he could contact the farmer for me.
To which Brendan replied on the phone, “Mairéad, you are not going to believe this but I am currently just driving into his farm to meet with him, I will call you back in a minute.”
Brendan called me back within another minute, he said, “Mairéad, I am sorry about this, but the farmer moved your car to a place called Oranmore because he needed the space here.”
To which I replied, “Brendan, you are not going to believe this but I am in Oranmore.”
Here is the point: neither I nor my car were planned to be in Oranmore independent of each other at that point in time. I told Brendan that I did not have the key to it, the farmer had. At which point, Brendan was distracted slightly, he said,” Mairéad – one tic – my dad has just arrived, he wants me for something, I’ll call you back in a few minutes.”
Brendan called me back, he said, ”Mairéad, you are not going to believe this but my dad is going to Oranmore shortly to do a painting job, the farmer has given him the keys, and traffic permitting he should be with you in about twenty minutes.”
It still left me tight for time, but the bonus was that I had a twenty minute slot in which to get a take-out coffee and muffin, chill out and walk to the well, the place where I had agreed to meet his Dad; I sat on the wall of this massive well with the sun beating down on my back as I waited. Amazingly, the Dad arrived within fifteen minutes. I got into his van. He gave me the keys to my car, and as he took me directly to where my motor was newly stored, he told me, “Jaysus, I was fierce lucky, traffic is really building in Galway now, everyone is arriving in for the biggest event of the year – The Galway Races. But I took a divergence.” He then told me about this divergence around the city to get my car back to the garage.
My car was at the Mazda garage within forty minutes of their original call.
I seriously counted my blessings and had a massive smile on my face as I entered. The repair centre took it immediately, and then since luck had appeared to be on my side, I asked graciously whether there was any chance that one of their staff might drop me into town to get a bus back to my home. The repair man told me again that they were seriously short staffed at that time, otherwise he would have had no problem with my request. I thanked him anyway. He looked at me and said, “but what I will do for you instead is give the car a thorough valet inside and outside.” We both smiled.
Awash with smiles, I decided to walk into town, I was wearing high heels, what can I say, I am vertically challenged and I had no clue that morning that any of this would occur that day.
Then something else happened. Another customer approached me as I was leaving. He had overheard that I was looking for a spin. He offered to drop me. I thanked him. And as we set off, he hit the heavy traffic as cars were building traffic jams in their arrival for the weekend! He took a divergence, cross country really! In the most beautiful way, the divergence brought me within a five minute walk of my home. Now I just couldn’t stop smiling!
Something extraordinary had happened for me that day, and I was in awe as I wondered about the forces within life, these unseen nuances that we can easily become non aware of.
Wonderful is the ultimate description for those who know what it really means to wonder. We can wonder at the most beautiful sights, scenery, landscapes and imagery, and be enthralled. Yet, to be in a state of wonder about all those other things that are not normally visible to the eye but easily felt is pure amazement. That is what I felt and still do.
And doing this on a small scale causes me to remember how it can so easily work on a larger one – after all the essence of the universe doesn’t differentiate between that which our minds call ‘something small’ or ‘something large’. The Soul of the world doesn’t judge, we either go with it or we don’t! Those events which our minds may categorise as ‘small’ may well be the reminders of such a beautiful and wonderful force that is always at work, causing us to think about that which is happening all around us all of the time. The observation and awareness of this can only mean one thing, which is that life is beautiful when we allow it to be.
We can sit down and wonder how something can happen easily without rationale and many times, many people pass it off as coincidence. However, as we sit there and connect truly with our feelings as our hearts call to us, we can smile to ourselves knowing that in truth there are no coincidences.
Life always conspires to help us when we really want something done, when we are open to it, when we do not think otherwise, and when we believe. The only barrier, perhaps, is ourselves.
Mairéad Whyte is the author of the novel, All for Grace - an uplifting novel of love and hope despite adverse circumstances. It combines the ordinary with the extraordinary, the physical and the spiritual worlds, and the serious with the funny. It is one of a kind with raving reviews.
She is currently near completion of her second novel, “The Butterfly” – based on true events, it is one woman’s transformation following her near-death experience as she journey’s into the unknown to pursue her destiny. The reader is left with an uplifted feeling through an upbeat and humorous narrative.
She may be contacted via www.maireadwhyte.com.