The Saddest Words

This traveling month I’ve heard words that tasted delicious:
In Ohio, “I’m having another baby!”
In California, “You are courageous!”
In Maryland, “You are such a good friend!”
In West Virginia, “Thank you for coming so far!”

I’ve experienced things that brightened the rest of my day:
In California, I watched the Sierra Nevada Mountains for miles and miles as I drove through the Central Valley.
In Maryland, I met my friend’s teenage son whom I had never seen.
In Indiana, I ate at an Amish restaurant where I tasted raisin pie for the first time in many years.
In Kentucky, I saw astonishing ice “waterfalls” in the gorges where the highway is carved.

I’ve also heard words that felt like stubbing my toe:
“Your luggage didn’t come on your flight.”
“That’s all we had. There’s no more.”
“There’s no outlet.”
“You can’t pay that way.”

But on the road there is one question that sucks the air right out of me:
“Table for one?”

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About Ben Unseth

Executive Director at Project Understanding (2014-2017), social service agency in Ventura, CA
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