Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Depth of Kindness

I think a lot of my regular readers (gee, that sounds rather arrogant -- "regular readers" -- like I'm Maureen Freakin' Dowd or something!) know that this has been a tough year Chez Mel. My sis was struggling to find work in a DOA local job market. Our mom died very suddenly and unexpectedly. Slowly, things have picked up -- my sis has a job that she seems to really love (or like a great deal), and we're working through our new status as orphans as best we can. My sis and I are from tough Irish and Swedish stock with some stiff upper lip British thrown in for good measure, and that genetic coding has gotten us through a lot. Another thing that has been a continual source of strength for us has been the love and support of our friends. We've been blessed with some pretty great people in our lives.

We were reminded of this last night in a pretty great way.

It was a typical Wednesday night. We had just finished dinner and my sis had headed back to the den to get ready for another installment of The Ford Show. I was in my holey but totally comfy sweats watching a DVRed episode of Melrose Place. (I had to see Amanda's return! And I have to say FINALLY -- age is NOT treating Heather Locklear so kindly. Either that or her plastic surgeon.) A friend of mine (Anne) popped online and asked if we would be home in about 15 minutes. I said that we would, and she told me she and her husband were popping by.

My immediate thought was, "Um, weird." Anne is a good friend that I've made through doing theatre locally, but not a friend that typically "pops by." When they arrived, both she and her husband came in. I grew concerned. Anne has faced numerous health battles in the past several years that often require surgeries and painful rehab. I worried that maybe something huge was going on.

Sort of. Anne told me that she did have to have a medical procedure done right after Christmas, assuring me that it was pretty minor although inconvenient. Inconvenient in that she and her husband had made plans for that day, plans they now had to change, plans they were instead gifting to me and my sis. It turns out that the plans they had made involved tickets to go see the pre-Broadway run of The Addams Family in Chicago, starring Nathan Lane and Bebe Neuwirth. I had mentioned the show to Anne about a month or so ago, telling her I was thinking of getting tickets for my sis and I. I had not yet had the chance to buy the tickets due to some logistical snafus like transportation and where we'd sleep. Anyway, Anne handed me an envelope containing two tickets to see the show. Her only caveat was that we go, have a good time, and tell her all about it. It was her gift to us. When my sis and I looked at the tickets, we were floored. We were holding two pretty pricey orchestra level tickets to see a show starring two people we've idolized for years -- and one of our mother's absolute favorite actors, which makes it seem all the more fitting. Anne said to us, "After the year you two have had, we thought you would be the perfect people to enjoy this and that it would be good for the two of you to go have just a great, fun time."

My sis and I were literally floored. It takes a lot to render either of speechless, but we truly were unable to speak. Crying -- now that was something we were able to manage. Of course the flurry of preparations now begins as we address the logistics, but suddenly, that seems meaningless. Because we don't have a ticket expense to worry about, the train and a hotel room seem much less extravagant. It will be a nice way for the two of us to wrap up our annus horribilis and hopefully begin a new annus mirabilis.


Mike said...

Wow -- that's so awesome...yay!

This show just keeps coming up for me in the past 24 hours -- which isn't so surprising since I have to go past the theater every weekday, but still...

First, I was finally looking online for tickets for it finally. My boyfriend Andy is an Addams Family fanboy, if such a thing can exist. So when he comes back to town to visit (also after Christmas) we have to go see it or I'll be in big trouble. Seriously, other than seeing me and our cats, I think that's the only thing he really wants to do during his visit back. Like so much so that this was the only thing he was worried about missing when he decided to leave town for six months. Because of that, I think I'm going to try to get us tickets so we can make it part of a New Years Even celebration.

And my friend Stephen went to see it just last night and wrote about a confrontation he had with a guy afterwards on Facebook. (The guy was sorta badmouthing something or another and Stephen stepped up to put the guy in his place.)

I'm not sure what you're schedule will be like when you're in town -- and honestly what mine will be like either, since I'm doing Christmas on the Gulf Shore with my family but also trying to get back here as soon as possible once Andy comes back to town -- but I'd love to see you (and for you to meet Andy) if we can make it work.

Again, though, I'm just so happy for your kind gift. You so deserve it.

Mel said...

Mike, I'm sure we can work out something! We're going to do an early train up one day, late train back the next day to kind of "maximize" our time in the city.

NICKI said...

That is so nice! I actually cried a little reading about it...then again, there is a new phone commercial that makes me cry when I see it too. Still,so nice!