It’s the Little Grievances That Take Character

It’s the Little Grievances That Take Character

I often think about what Judy said in Daddy-Long-Legs. “It isn’t the big troubles in life that require character. Anybody can rise to a crisis and face a crushing tragedy with courage, but to meet the petty hazards of the day with a laugh – I really think that requires spirit.” And as this Jonah week dragged on and on, I thought about it more than ever- it really does feel like there’s truth in it sometimes.

Sunday was such a good day because I met some nice people and even exchanged numbers with a few of them, but then Monday came in the Mondayest of ways, and lasted all week. I was still smarting about getting stiffed at my favorite little diner by work, and inconvenienced because I haven’t wanted to go back since. My legs ached from sleeping on my air mattress (the air mattress was a great blessing, since I was going to sleep on the floor. But man, I was ready for a real bed), and I had grit in my shoe for a whole day and a half. I’m pretty sure it takes skill to keep grit in your shoe that long. Early one morning the dumb ladle wouldn’t stay in the dish drainer and I dropped it so many times my roommate had to come sleepily out of her room and ask me to be quiet. I accidentally used someone’s private cupboard, and I’m pretty sure my shoes were always in the wrong place in the hall. WordPress quit working for me and I couldn’t upload any posts. I was stressed about my stuff getting loaded in North Carolina for its trek north this week, and feeling bad because the people able to load it were sick. I was equally stressed about how I would manage to get it all up to my third-floor walkup apartment when it came, since I own a lot of heavy books and a massive bookshelf to keep them all on. And to top it all off, I COULDN’T find plain ole salt in the grocery store, so I was cooking with seasoned salt, which makes everything taste the same after a while. Have I mentioned it was a Jonah week?

But as things do, they sorted themselves out. I found a bodega that serves tea for a dollar or two close to work, and the grit was eventually removed from my shoe. The roommate still smiles at me even though I drop ladles, and I suppose I’ll figure out the shoe storage situation eventually. Raphael kindly helped me with my WordPress issue, and on Thursday night the grocery store rose to the challenge and provided me with salt, which is a momentous occasion worth writing about. Thursday night when I simply couldn’t screw up the energy to go to Tim Keller’s weekly session I’ve been attending, I stayed at home and cleaned little corners and fried pork chops (with salt!) and had a lovely salad that tasted like North Carolina with its balsamic vinegar topping. Being domestic soothes my nerves, I’ve found. I must have been a housekeeper in a previous life.

Best of all, my stuff was loaded by the poor sick Father and Brother and Cousin, and made its way up to my corner of the city. A parking spot opened up right in front of my house, and I stood there in the drizzle, anxiously praying for the rain to hold off long enough to lug my books (have I mentioned yet how many heavy books I have?) up the stairs. Behold, the rain ceased spattering, and the boxes were lugged. May I just say, God bless my parents for the energy they expended! Part way through the exhausting process, my neighbor came home from work and although we’ve barely spoken two words yet, he girded up his loins and carried the heaviest boxes of all up the stairs, and helped me maneuver my armchair around the tight corners, and was basically an angel. And then as we were heading out, another neighboring couple came by with homemade bread and food and daffodils to brighten my life, and cheerful promises to see each other for dinner next week. And now I’m sitting on my very own extra-long bed for extra-long me, covered in mounds of fluffy bedding and surrounded my my own books and things, and I think I’ll most likely make it after all. 🙂

One other Jonah thing happened during the unloading: a little old lady sat on my phone with her chair and thoroughly crushed it beyond use. My newish and far too expensive phone. My only mode of transportation, because I use maps to get basically everywhere. It’s complicated how one such tiny old lady could cause such damage, but the screen shattered and the front facing camera is useless and the screen had purple streaks which quickly turned to a big black corner, which then turned to a neon green screen which is unusable. I could have shed a tear or three over that hunk of metal and broken glass, but the old lady was and still is oblivious, thanks to her lack of English and unawareness of my distressed face, and hopefully happily and guilelessly asleep at this very moment. Even this dark cloud has a silver lining though- apparently there’s an Apple store just a few blocks away, and it turns out my roommate is friends with the manager thereof, so there may yet be a happy, albeit expensive, end to that little story.

And now, off to bed to bring the glad tomorrow. See you later.

P.S. Someone, and by someone I mean Rosie, told me I need more pictures in my posts. She’s right, but alas, I struggle to take pictures of my life without feeling like a tourist and a selfie-obsessed kid, so my pictures are few. Perhaps someday I’ll learn. Till then, you’ll just have to use your imagination like your great-great-great-great grandparents did when they read blogs.


One Year Ago:

Questions to Which I May Never Have Answers

Two Years Ago:

Frigid New York Jaunt

Indian Butter Chicken to Knock Your Socks Off

Fine Wine Versus Plexus Slim

6 thoughts on “It’s the Little Grievances That Take Character

  1. Photo taking tip: just do it.

    I’m sorry your week was so hard. Now comfort yourself with a quick reread of Daddy Longlegs on your very own bed with a giant bowl of popcorn that you don’t have to share.

    1. Ha, you sound like Nike.
      And thank you. I actually just read Daddy-Long-Legs on my commute, but I do have my own books now and I haven’t had popcorn in far too long, so that idea is swell.

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