Never thought about that – Traffic Jams
The Kaleidoscope Effect – Everything has another side to it and nothing is as it seems
It was a usual drive-time-slow-jam on the freeway. I didn’t mind it when I was alone. It was expected and I usually would put on some Aretha Franklin music and dance to it in my car. But this day was different. I had a mainland guest with me and felt somehow responsible for the traffic jam. She was coming with me to work and was going to use my car while I was busy.
I muttered and swore under my breath at the idiots on the road who caused even more problems than usual on this sunny day in Hawaii. She ignored me and kept exclaiming at the beauty and wonder of scenery I had seen thousands of times.
“Oh! Look at those birds! They’re beautiful! What are they?”
Me, “Egrets. I don’t know how they got here. They don’t look like they could fly across the Pacific … mumble grumble mumble.”
“They’re elegant! They look like mini-cranes! Oh! Look at that, is that Pearl Harbor?”
“Yeah. Oh LOOK at that guy! He’s the cause of this traffic! Why doesn’t he pull his car to the side!”
“Is that why they call it Pearl Harbor? It looks like a gray pearl in the morning sunlight! WOW!”
“I don’t know. I think it had to do with finding pearls there before all those ships came in… Oh, come ON people! Don’t WALK YOUR CARS! DRIVE!”
“Look at that pink building up there! What is that? It looks like a Parrish painting. It almost looks like it’s floating in the middle of all that green!”
“Oh, that’s Tripler Hospital. I don’t know why they painted it pink. Prolly got extra paint from the Royal Hawaiian Hotel. Come ON PEOPLE!”
Traffic came to a complete stop and she put her hand on my shoulder. “Beth, you are so lucky to have slow traffic in an area as beautiful as this. All I see are semi-trucks on all four sides of me at home. If I didn’t have a sun roof, I wouldn’t even know what kind of day it was. And it’s usually smoggy and ugly. Here, you can look over there and see down the valley. You can look up to the mountains and see the beauty of Hawaii every single day on the way to work. Wow. You are so very, very lucky.”
I stopped grumbling and looked around. She was right. Time to wake up. People spend their entire life savings to come to the islands. I get to “go to Hawaii” every weekend. And during the week, I’m treated to some of the most amazing and beautiful scenery the world has to offer.
I never looked at traffic jams the same since.
How ’bout you?