Yesterday was the kind of day around here that would make 9/11 look calm. In fact, it was a day that even chocolate wouldn’t help. Everything that could have gone wrong, did go wrong — and then some.

It began optimistically enough. The older folks of the household were at work, and our youngest is away at summer camp. I had an entire day all myself to look forward to, and I was ready to savor every minute. My attitude dial was set at “high productivity”, and my mind was ready to roll.

“This is gonna be a great day!” I chanted to myself. I set to work with vigor.

Alas, everything I touched broke, spilled, or malfunctioned. On top of all this, both my computer and my external hard drive went down, requiring not one, but two trips, to the repair shop. By the time evening came around, I had had it. If it weren’t for my darling hubby spoiling me and making me a fantastic supper, I probably would’ve gone right to bed.

As we ate, I realized that I hadn’t gotten out for exercise as I had planned, which made the whole day seem worse. Because of all the unhappy detours during the day, we ended up eating supper fairly late. Still, I wanted to go for at least a short walk so that I could let go of all the pent up tension. We finished up, cleaned up, grabbed the dog and the leash, and headed out the door.

As we walked, we heard sounds like thunder. Then we saw flashes of light in the sky – colored light. Fireworks!

“Where on earth are those coming from?” I asked Mark.

“I dunno,” he responded. “They’re pretty close. And they’re too big and high up to be amateur. Those have to be professionally done.”

We zigzagged our way through the blocks, catching glimpses of the beautiful display in between the trees and houses. We hit a nice clear spot just in time to see the grand finale. It was gorgeous! From its direction, we surmised that it must have come from the municipal park near our home, so we began walking faster and faster in that direction. We started passing small groups of people with those goofy little glow thingies around their necks, ankles and wrists and knew something had to be up. The closer we got to the park, the more people and glow thingies we saw, and soon we could see festival lights and hear music.

“I wonder what this is,” I muttered. “Today isn’t a holiday, so what would they be celebrating?”

“Maybe it’s a company picnic,” Mark guessed.

“Must be a big company. Let’s go see,” I urged.

Through the park entrance, we could see people laughing and dancing and a live band playing on the stage.

“A concert!” Mark exclaimed. “Come on, let’s go in and listen.”

There was no admission booth, so we wandered in. The band was playing oldies rock ‘n roll; we moved closer to the stage. They were playing our favorite songs from way back when, one after another. We found ourselves arm in arm, tapping our toes and nodding to the music. For being a small-town festival band, these guys were pretty good!

“You see,” Mark said as he gave my forehead a little kiss. “God did this just for you, because you had such a bad day today. He’s making it up to you.”

“I guess so,” I chuckled.

The band was so good that the crowd begged them to play longer and consequently they played several songs past their original end time. We stayed until the end, enjoying every minute of it. By now, my curiosity had become overpowering. I sauntered up to one of the park benches and asked the people sitting on it the occasion for the festivities.

“Oh, this is National Night Out for St. Francis,” a spry little girl answered me. “The city put this on for anybody who wants to come.”

On the way home, I marveled at God’s goodness. It had been a really tough day, but He ended it with two of my favorite things — fireworks and live music, oldies to boot!

And that was much better than chocolate.

Categories: Blog


Anonymous · August 5, 2010 at 10:26 pm

I got goose bumps at the end
when you got the answer what was the reason for the celebration..God Bless for sharing this great story.

Marge Fenelon · August 6, 2010 at 1:39 am

Thank you for your kind words!

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