Sunday, May 21, 2006

Kobayashi Maru

Yesterday after Mrs F left for the Graduation Ceremony and left me behind to clean, I had the nagging feeling that I had been here before.

It looked like familiar ground around me.

It was a trap. A no-win scenario. My very own Kobayashi Maru.

If I stopped what I was doing at home there was a very good chance that I would not get everything done in time for the 2:30 party. I had the pool to prepare, errands to run and last minute cleaning to do. If I went to the Graduation Ceremony I would not get everything done.

If I didn't go to the Graduation ceremony, I would hear how I didn't even go to her Graduation and I would hear it for life. I would feel horrible. I knew I had to go and I wanted to go.

Like Capt. James T. Kirk, I cheated. I prayed.

Here is what happened and you decide if I beat the no-win scenario.

I cleaned like a mad-man until 8:56 knocking out the remainder of three bathrooms and a kitchen floor in 1.5 hours and the I jumped in the shower.

I was out of the house at 9:14 and driving the 35 minutes to the college for the 10:00 AM ceremony. I forgot my cell phone 2 minutes from the house and turned around and got it. I should have gotten the boys up and moving too but you can only lead a horse to water.

I arrived at the college at 9:50 with a stop for gas and drove to the first parking lot I saw. It was pretty full and I took one short loop when I saw the last remaining spot in a grassy medial strip and parked in 8.5 seconds.

Grabbing my camera, I walked the 1/4 mile over to the ceremony just in time to see the processional with Pomp and Circumstance playing. Since I was by myself I figured the best thing to do was to make my way to the front to look for a single seat. I made my way towards the band where the professors were sitting up front.

There was a reserved section for the professors that had two and half empty rows of seats and people were lined up there stretching and looking for their graduates, using the area to take pictures since the processional was on the other side of this section. I noticed Mrs F's radiology professor in the back of the reserved section.

Eventually I made my way across the empty reserved section to the aisle. Across the aisle was the section of students in their costumes. I looked around and there, three rows ahead of me across the aisle was my wife in her cap and gown. I couldn't believe it.

I called out to her and she turned and was shocked to see me. Remember, I wasn't supposed to be coming and now here I was three rows away in the best seat in the house.

She was pleasantly shocked.

I was so proud of her. She had worked so hard to keep her 4.0 average and here she was graduating with highest honors and I was fortunate enough to be here to witness it.

I sat down. No one came up and gave me a hard time about sitting in the professor's section. If any one asked I was prepare to tell them I forgot my cap and gown. I even got a printed program, only the students and professors received those.

I looked behind me to see the 2 thousand people stretching and craning to see their loved ones and here I was 25 feet from mine.

I sat and listened to the speeches, waited until she went up and received her diploma, stage whispered to her that I was leaving and headed back to the car. I was out of there by 11:30

It was amazing and was one of those rare truly joyous events in life.

On the way home I knocked out the errands I had to do anyway and was home before 1.

So let's review: I made it to a seat in a crowded event in less than an hour and the only way I could have had a better seat was to be on the platform receiving a bouquet of roses from the dean. I had a clear view of my graduate, snapping great photos of her in one the best moments of her life and got out of there in an hour and half.

Lord, you are good to me beyond measure.

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