Death by a Thousand Cuts by Maureen Lang

Okay, the title of this blog post may be a slight (no, huge) exaggeration to describe my last couple of weeks, but hey, being a writer I’m drawn to the dramatic.

It all started with my family vacation to Nashville. A lovely city, lots of history. However, we always take our vacation in early August so perhaps this wasn’t the best time of year to visit this particular location. In between rain storms (one of which cut the power at our resort for a while) the air was so thick with humidity even a Chicagoan like me had trouble breathing—and that means it had to be really bad, because Chicago has never been known for its air, at least not in a good way. Quite the contrary, since the Indian word for Chicago is somehow connected with onion – or at least the stink associated with such a thing.

However, we did manage to see some sights and had a generally good time until the last day. While I was packing up to leave, my husband went out to find a local bakery for a breakfast treat before we hit the road. That’s when things went from a not-so-memorable vacation to one that will live in infamy. I’ll start by saying I’m glad to report no one was hurt in the accident that happened. Someone pulling out from a local McDonald’s plowed right into my husband in our van. The young driver said he didn’t see him, accelerating enough upon impact to cause the entire front end of our van to end up on the road.

This was obviously the deepest cut but it set in motion a series of lesser wounds. Individually such cuts wouldn’t have hurt much, but piling one upon another has created a series of “What? What now?” reactions. Here are a few:

Police took over an hour to get to the scene of the accident; the first of many delays that eventually put us about 7 hours behind our plans.
Tow truck originally called never showed up; the one the police eventually called did.
Called several rental companies for a van to drive home. Only one place had anything remotely similar (who knew vans were so rare?) but refused to rent it to us because they were ten minutes outside of the territory.
Finally found a rental company that told us they had a van but when my husband arrived he was told they didn’t. One problem after another until we finally received a vehicle. Arrived home to try exchanging it for a cheaper car until our car could be repaired to find out not only was the vehicle rented to us not in the system, but once they found it, it was being recalled and we needed to turn it in immediately. Many other problems ensue on the paperwork end, including an extra $500 fee for turning the car in to a Chicago location and not back in Nashville (more paperwork snafoos on their part which would have been so much easier to deal with if only the people on the other end of the phone were a little nicer).
We’re finally told, more than a week after the accident, that our van was considered a total loss. Good news: we don’t have to drive back down to Nashville to pick it up. Bad news: receiving a check for the value of a five year old van won’t even cover half of what a replacement van will cost.

In between all of this, my daughter is moving from the city out to the suburbs and so I’m really missing the van that I’d planned to use to help transport boxes and other things we’d rather not have the movers handle.

Countless little annoyances and inconveniences have come up through the week, ones that would have simply rolled off of my shoulders had they not been part of a steady build. The latest of which is that we left the toll road transponder in the recalled vehicle . . .  so I’m off to try retrieving that before taking my handicapped son to a dental appointment, then I’m on to paint some trim at my daughter’s new house.

Somehow all of this would be far easier to handle if I just had some time to write.

But as I really consider all of these little cuts, I realize how inconsequential they are in the grand scheme of things. God is still God, He is still good, and one day I’ll look back on all this with a smile and say that’s just how life is sometimes.

Hope your days are better!


About Maureen Lang

Author of a dozen novels, Maureen Lang has won the Selah Award, a Holt Medallion, FHL's Reader's Choice Award, and been a finalist in such contests as the Christy, the Rita, the Carol, Book Buyer's Best, and others. Before publication she was the recipient of a Golden Heart and a Genesis (then called the Noble Theme). She resides with her husband and kids in the Chicago area. Titles by Maureen Lang All In Good Time Bees In The Butterfly Garden Springtime Of The Spirit Whisper On The Wind Look To The East My Sister Dilly On Sparrow Hill The Oak Leaves Remember Me Pieces Of Silver
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2 Responses to Death by a Thousand Cuts by Maureen Lang

  1. juliearduini says:

    Wow, Maureen. That’s a vacation to remember. So glad you are okay.


    • Maureen Lang says:

      Thanks, Julie! Things have definitely settled down since last week. 🙂 I took pictures of the van and will take pictures of our new one to fill the last few pages of the Shutterfly vacation book I plan to have made. Memories! Some good, some not so good.


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