Saturday, January 16, 2010

Pick up the phone!

6:06 p.m. Today's project was to drive to Redlands and find out why my 82 year-old dad did not answer his phone all day yesterday.

This was quite urgent because my dad and I talk on the phone at least three times a week, and all I could get was a busy signal! Daddy does not talk on the phone much at all, mostly for business matters and his doctor appointments.

You can imagine the scenarios Steve and I discussed on our way over. We had given Daddy a cell phone, so why hadn't he called to say, "My house phone's out--call me at this number." Was he hurt, ill, robbed and injured, tried to call and the phone fell off the hook?

I asked all of my Facebook friends to pray, which I knew they would, because Daddy is healthy and independent, but he does live alone. Some comfort came to me because the mail people in Redlands are instructed to check on any senior citizen living alone, who has not picked up their mail from the day before. The mail carrier then delivers the mail to the door. If no answer, they call the police. Isn't that wonderful? Hopefully many more communities will follow suit!

Not having received an emergency call as next of kin, I felt hopeful. When we pulled up to the door, the dogs were not barking frantically as they would be if they hadn't been fed for a few days--that was a good sign! I even had Daddy's housekey at the ready...just in case.

So Steve and I rang the bell, and as my dad opened the door we both yelled out, "Where have YOU been?!" simultaneously. "Daddy, your phone's out!" I yanked out my cell phone, called his number, and got no ring, just to prove it, and after I hung up, he picked up the receiver and there was no dialtone. He hadn't even realized it, because he doesn't use the phone that much. I asked why he hadn't called me when he hadn't heard from me? At least that way, he would have found out his phone was dead!


All's well that ends well, Shakespeare wrote, and in this case, at least, with a technician on the way, and Daddy's cell phone turned on, it was true. Steve and I could scoot on home with peace of mind, glad to know my dad is alive, well, and enjoying a good life in his own quiet way. We are exhorted to pray for all men, and for those who are in authority, "that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence." And that's how my dad lives! May he be granted many more years.

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