Friday we drove through wine country in the Santa Barbara area. It was a beautiful drive.
The wine-tasting town of Los Olivos was certainly unique. The high-class of society find their way there to celebrate their unique penchant for good wine … cough, cough. I was about as comfortable as a homeless beggar on Temple Square in Salt Lake City. :-) It was nice, however, to observe those who are playing the game of life and think they are classy. Good for them! Why not?
Luckily, Sheri dressed me today so that I sorta fit in. No pajama pants or sweats. :-)
Now here’s the irony: Los Olivos doesn’t have any public restrooms. Most of the shops don’t have publicly-accessable restrooms. The city has porta-potties that we couldn’t even find. We stopped at a deli where Sheri ordered a vege sandwich … I wasn’t hungry. Another customer approached the cashier and asked where the bathrooms where. The cashier kindly motioned toward the outside, back of the store where some were located. Then, a lady and her daughter came into the deli and walked straight for the cashier and asked if they had any bathrooms. The cashier, almost rudely, said they didn’t have any bathrooms except down the street in the hotel.
We walked up and down the main street and finally entered a higher end hotel. I feigned an interest in what it cost to stay there so that Sheri could use their bathrooms. Ah, the game!
From Los Olivos we traveled to the Danish-themed town of Solvang. A very clean town of a Nordic ambience … uh … a tourist trap.
Unfortunately, I received an email from a bank investigator and a call from the cable company about the same time we arrived in Solvang. I tried to ignore them both, but could not. While Sheri walked around for a bit, I stayed in our rental car and emailed … slowly on my phone … the bank person who is handling some confusion we’ve been dealing with for a few days. Again, unfortunately, one of my dearest friend’s pride has caused some investigation into the MWAW. The last few days have helped me to understand Timothy’s message,
“… Protect him, not from his enemies, but from yourselves.”
Sigh … :-)
Please, those who wish to support and help this work must submit their free will to that of the MWAW. I have never asked anyone to change who they are, nor have I compromised anyone’s free will in anyway. Those who help in the MWAW do so out of their own free will. But when it comes to a direct involvement with the Brothers and the MWAW, it has to be done the way that I am instructed for my protection and that of the MWAW.
With today’s conversation with the bank official, however, I was able to bring things back to a safe normality, but lost the help that would have greatly benefited the work.
The other phone call I received was from a utility company regarding one of the MWAW properties, causing me even more consternation. I took the call and shook my head, then spent almost a 1/2 hour working out the problem. (I do miss Rod Vessels’ help at times.) :-)
When these two issues were resolved, I joined Sheri walking through the streets of Solvang. Because of the two phone calls I dealt with, I didn’t enjoy the walk through the tourist traps as much as I would have had I not received the calls, but Sheri did. So I let her.
By the time we returned to Santa Barbara, the sun was about ready to go down. The full moon was to rise Friday night and Sheri wanted to take a romantic stroll along the beach. Me, romantic? Not this time. I was in no mood. I tried to give Sheri what she wanted … what she deserved … but my mind and heart could not. All I could do was reflect on why I was with Sheri in regards to the MWAW and what I should have been doing as its messenger. It bothered me that I was vacationing on a beach while so many others suffered throughout the world. It bothered me that Sheri deserved to have a romantic walk and that there were so many other women abused, alone, without anyone to share a romantic moment. The duality of my realities completely destroyed any joy that I felt in vacationing that evening.
Sheri felt the distance. She was patient and kind as we walked along while she felt that I hardly wanted to be with her. I even told her that I might want to be by myself and that she could do what she wanted. She remained patient and finally said that we could turn around and go back to the motel. I didn’t want to be with her.
My mind was racing between the reality of the moment and that of the true reality of what is really going on in this world. For a few moments I pulled myself together and managed to inform Sheri that I would stay with her if she wanted to find somewhere to eat. After a few minutes, I finally pulled myself together. We had a nice Mexican dinner and enjoyed the outside ambience.
Sheri remained a saint … and she would need that sainthood for the rest of the evening.
By the time we got back to the motel room, I had lost it. I pretty much informed Sheri that I was going to call the Brothers to come and get me and that she would have to travel home to Utah without me for the next couple of days. I told her I couldn’t continue with our relationship, and that I had tried for years to find the sense in it all. I wanted her to let me go and let me be alone.
She was not happy and was more hurt than I have seen her.
To me, everything made sense that I could not vacation and take a romantic stroll along beach. To me, it made sense that I should never waste another moment of Sheri’s life because I can’t deal with playing the game. I didn’t want her to hurt anymore because of my actions … not another moment.
Then Sheri said something that opened my eyes to a reality that I seldom see in myself. Sheri told me that I was mean and that acting that way towards her was hurtful and mean.
Maybe it’s the new transition that I’m going through to be the best messenger I can be, but I finally listened to what Sheri, not only was saying, but what she was feeling.
She was right. I was mean.
I did not leave her. But because I didn’t want to be with her, I did use some artificial help to close down my mind and sleep.
This morning (Saturday) the realism of how I had treated Sheri because of my inability to deal with my reality really hit home. But it was her sainthood that eventually brought me out of it. Sheri told me that no matter how hard it was for her, no matter how mean I treated her, she would always be there and support me.
Wow! What a way to melt a heart into humility and submission.
My attitude adjusted and I was ready to do what Sheri had planned.
We drove to a trailhead and hiked 2.5 miles up the San Ysidro trail to a waterfall. It was quite a hike, a lot of exercise, but it was beautiful. I was glad I didn’t leave Sheri. We enjoyed the day.
After the hike, I ate more than I had all vacation … probably close to 6000 calories. I thought I was done until Sheri ordered a vegetarian pizza. I ate what she didn’t. She didn’t eat much.
Because Sheri could not sleep the night before, worried that I would wake up from my artificially-induced slumber and leave her, the physical events of the hike had exhausted her. I stayed up and watched a movie … a couple movies … while she slept soundly.
I watched Sheri for a time while she slept. How could I be mean? Especially to the woman who keeps me motivated because of who she is? I learned a lot today, more about myself and my ability (or inability) to deal with the game of life than I had ever before. It was a good lesson … a needed lesson.
This vacation, in spite of my few hours of intense “losing it,” was the best Sheri and I have ever had in almost 8 years. Maybe I can finally find a way to live in the world … without wondering why I have to. :-)