To this point, before I can write another word about my joyous, lost adventures, I need to share a story about my own ever-expanding cast.
Just about a year ago, as I drove down a small straight from my kid’s school towards home, the words Lime Rock popped into my head. I didn’t know then that my destiny wasn’t to become a master driver but instead, I would become the younger woman in the adventure of a lifetime!
Let’s go back to the post titled The Art of Living Lost: Find Your Line — it should have been called The Art of Living Lost: Find Your Life, because on a beautiful day last November, I found my life sitting in a chair wearing a sweater likely found in Mr. Rogers’ closet.
Unaware that my life was about to change, that day I spoke openly to a room of Lime Rock drivers about my experience on the track and the genesis of The Art of Living Lost, Mr. Rogers listened intently, smiled and offered words of encouragement, he said, “we all had to learn to drive the line, you’ll get better”. I’d recall the smile and the kindness later when one of the other drivers asked if I’d consider going on a date with Mr. Rogers
One week, no date, and 1000 words later, I contacted two drivers to ask for permission to use photos of their race cars in my book; it turns out one of the cars belonged to Mr. Rogers. After a brief conversation and some vague mention of lunch, I had the permission I needed to post the photos. Happy to have another story in the can, I grabbed a glass of wine and checked my Contact Me page. Truth be told, I’d forgotten I had a Contact Me page — but there it was, and lo and behold, front and center, was a note from Mr. Rogers.
Heartfelt and kind, he complimented my writing and shared his personal story of loss explaining that “he’s coped (with death) by driving the track at Lime Rock”. At the end of the note, he mentions having lunch. He was smart — compliment the girl, talk about shared experiences and then offer food. Within five minutes of our first conversation, I’d called him back, we laughed over how long it took me to read his Contact Me note, and he asked me out on our first date. Or I what I call a non-date-date.
You don’t know what a non-date-date is? It’s when I pay half the bill and my non-date-date stays firmly planted in the friend-zone. I’ve used this strategy for years and have never had a second non-date-date. It’s worked like a charm, until I met Mr. Rogers; he had all the time in the world. He was retired, his kids were successfully launched and the race tracks were closed until spring. It turns out, Mr. Rogers was an evil genius in a gray zipper sweater and he knew he could wait me out. And wait me out he did.
Incongruent side by side, he’s distinguished and polite. I however, am sometimes mistaken for a call girl. His online profile had him looking for a gal 55-65. Her kids would be established and out of the house, and geographically, this honey would live within 20 miles of his home. Instead, he found me, almost a decade younger, up to my ears with hormone addled kids, living two states away.
Looking back, I’m grateful that he kept asking me out and that I had the courage to finally say yes. Long gone are the days where I’d run to my car and lock the door before waving good night. Now we eat meat on hot swords and talk about current events. We spend a ton of time on the Tappan Zee bridge and debate the health benefits of wine and milk shakes. I’ve ridden on some of the most famous race tracks in the world and he’s survived kiddie pick-up. We laugh with friends about the unlikely chance of a widower meeting a widowed mother of triplets at, of all places, Lime Rock Park.
His kids are happy he has someone to share his stories with,
My kids love that he keeps me sane,
So here we are at the end of another BLOG where I share bits of wisdom intended to inspire you to look at life differently. This week I challenge you to listen to your intuition and maybe you’ll discover YOUR next adventure. If your thinking Guatemala, Contact Me.
Have a great week,