Sunday, July 20, 2008
Why did you have to be so difficult? Why couldn’t you have made it easy on both of us and just gone quietly? It was time to go, really it was. You were worn and cracked and making the new brick porch look bad. So why all the hassle?
I know you thought you could stay forever. Sometimes, I thought you would stay forever, stubborn as you were. I almost gave in. Almost. But, you probably didn’t know this about me: I’m a stubborn summab*tch, too. I kept coming back. The difference was I just kept bringing more tools until finally, I brought enough.
You were a worthy adversary, Sidewalk. You challenged me physically, mentally, and spiritually. Near 100-degree heat is not the day to take you on, but Mother Nature was clearly trying to protect you. She gave me rain to keep me from you and skyrocketing temperatures to dissuade me. I’ll admit, you did beat the crap out of me. But you did not break me. (Except for, well, maybe my hands, knees and wrists. But they’ll all be fine eventually.)
And while my Plan B didn’t work as I’d envisioned, your resolve slowly broke. You started giving up in bigger chunks, leaving less mess.
I know you’ve been here for nearly 70 years. My hat’s off to your amazing staying power. I respect your stamina and your strength. You took many opportunities to remind me of this, particularly when you forced me off balance and slammed me onto my tailbone or backside a few times. But, I’ll bet you didn’t think I’d get up. Oh, you were so wrong!
You see, I’ve got a stubborn streak a mile wide. Normally, it is not considered a virtue. In your case though, it was among my greatest assets.
I want to thank you for helping to tone my upper body. Beating you down and then picking you up has given me definition this body hasn’t seen since my 20s. I owe you for that. And your demise has elicited several unsolicited compliments from passersby who can’t help but ask what I’m doing next. Like the guy walking back from the library. The mailman. The girl walking her dog. That’s all encouraging.
So now you lay at the back of the property line, awaiting your next adventure. We kind of like you there. Perhaps you won’t leave after all. Maybe you’ll become a fountain, a small wall, or a flagstone-like path in the backyard.
It might be nice to keep you here after all. But, whether you stay or go is immaterial right now. The important thing is that you are now out of my way. Game off. I win!