It was a really pretty evening, the sun had gone down gloriously and the sky was now darkening with stars and moon getting brighter minute by minute. They were on another of his goofy dates. They had both stayed on campus that summer for their jobs and he had been coming up with casual, out-of-the-box ideas to get them together. This time he had driven them in his green Econoline van up to a scenic overlook where there were a few cement picnic shelters. So why the briefcase, she wondered? He opened it up and drew out a bottle, two glasses and a candle and proceeded to set the table and pour the wine. One more thing from the briefcase – a small black box, which he opened and turned toward the candlelight. Surprise! Yes, it was.
It had been a tough, challenging winter. Finances were tight and the eldest child needed some therapy that they just couldn’t afford. It had been a nice break when her brother and his family came to visit. The mood lightened and they had fun, all of them, but they were gone now. Everyday reality had been happening all day as she cleaned up the house, putting away the post-company clutter. It was about time to quit for the night and she went into the bedroom to turn down the bed covers, only there was an envelope on the pillow. She knew it would be a thank you note from her brother, and it was, but there was also a check inside for an exorbitant amount. Surprise!
They were excited, pulling her out to the driveway, telling her to cover her eyes. It was her birthday. Her daughter and friends had been gone for a while and now they were back and who knew what they had planned out for her? She was led out to the truck parked in the driveway and given permission to look. There it was! She had seen and remarked about it any number of times as she drove past the abandoned building where the Loyal Order of the Moose had met. It had been dangling, high on a pole by one chain at a rakish angle. And how had they ever gotten it down?! And now it was hers – a 8 foot long plastic sign with the word MOOSE in large red letters. Surprise!
She sort of viewed life as living from one surprise to the next. There had been quite a few and she was not afraid to think there would be more.