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Howdy. We've moved from Cayce, but St. Elizabeth of South Rose Hill or Lizette de Waccamaw de Sud just don't do it for me.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Notes from the Drive: Finding a Phone

(Written Saturday, May 24 at 11 PM in our little mountain cabin; to be posted once we get a web connection.)

On Friday, I drove from Myrtle Beach, SC to just above Meadows of Dan, VA. Each year, I plan to leave the conference at noon and arrive here at around 6 PM. Each year, something changes that plan (traffic from road construction, traffic from really bad accidents, storms severely limiting speed through the mountains, 2nd flat tire in a week, etc.) and I arrive very late and very tired.

2008, much to its credit, presented a novel delay. Sometime in between walking to breakfast and arriving (post-prandially) at the first conference session of the day, my work-issued cell phone, with its clip-on holder, came off of my skirt. No problem, just call the phone and whoever found it will let me know where I can go to collect it, right? Even if that were the case, the cell reception around the old Myrtle Beach Air Force Base is abysmal. After spending quite a while re-tracing steps, looking in several places and even getting housekeeping to let me back into the room, I had to conclude that the phone was gone.

Yes, I said several prayers for the intercession of St. Anthony. Here's how I think they were answered.

Over the past few weeks, Izzy and I have been planning our trip for our 25th wedding anniversary. (I'll pause here for your congratulations.) This will take us across the country to a couple of places in Oregon -- me flying to meet Izzy, who will be on his bike. Our cell phone plan covered NC, SC and the Savannah area of GA. We really hadn't needed more coverage until Izzy started going on field trips with kiddoes and we got socked with roaming and long distance charges -- surprise! Those weren't going to be reimbursed. So, in my usual fashion, I'd been slowly and diligently looking at various plans and making comparison notes and trying to decide how to proceed. I'd also thought it was time to maybe think about considering pondering the probable possibility of getting another cell phone, in order to separate work and personal use. But again, no hurry.

I think St. Anthony's intercessions helped me figure out that (1) I needed a phone for the trip to VA -- so let's go ahead and add that 2nd line NOW, and (2) which of the many plans to choose when I located the Alltel store, despite the migraine. Oh, I didn't mention the migraine? The delay at the Alltel store was just long enough for it to clear, so that I could drive safely to VA. I managed to leave Myrtle Beach around 1:45 PM, arriving at the cabin just before 8. So, had I left at noon, would I have been closer to my desired transit time? We'll never know. But I arrived safely, with no headache and with an emergency phone on my belt.

I was also able to call work (from Alltel's land line) and report the phone missing, and they started the process for me getting another work phone. It will have the same number, and I'll be making calls when we get back in range of a cell tower (there are none anywhere near these cabins) to folks who might need the new number.

And, BTW, we now have nationwide (as much as Alltel covers, of course) coverage and unlimited texting.

Upshot, prayers for lost things might not be answered by you getting back the exact thing you lost, but they do seem to be answered. Turns out, I needed an impetus to act more than I needed to find my phone. Thank you, St. Anthony.

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