The best fortune cookie ever

by Brian Keaney

I didn’t do much of anything today.  I went to the beach for a little while, I watched the Patriots game, I read my book, and that’s about it.  If I did this little at home I would be going out of my mind with boredom, but somehow on this side of the bridge I am perfectly content to be so lazy.  Must be the salt air.

What a difference this was from last weekend.  It was nonstop on Saturday, what with working Dedham’s 375th birthday party all day and then installing the Knights of Columbus officers that night, but a lot of fun.  I was so worn out that night that I was in bed very, very early.  I don’t remember the exact time, but it wasn’t any later than 11.  Considering 1 am or later is usually bedtime, with the book down and lights out a half hour after that, this was unusual, but I was asleep before my head hit the pillow.

My phone rang that night sometime after 3 am, which gave me four solid hours of very restful sleep.  I usually get at least five or six, but four is plenty for me to operate the next day.  The conversation that followed was brief, but long enough that I had trouble falling back asleep again.  I don’t think my eyes were shut for good until just before the fourth hour.

As I tossed and turned for that next hour, I came close to cursing the friend who woke me up.  Every time I was about to, however, I remembered what I heard said in the earlier time zone on the other end of the line.  It was said about me – but not to me – just before the connection was severed.  It wasn’t intended to be, but it might just have been the best thing I’ve ever heard anyone say about me, and I nearly forgot it.

Brian Keaney the writer has a post this week about a nightmare he had, and reading it sparked this memory in my mind.  Just before the phone call, I was having a bad dream myself.  I don’t know that I would call it a nightmare, but it was unpleasant nonetheless.  I was in a boat traveling down a small river when all of a sudden it sank.  Just then I realized I had my backpack on with my laptop in it.  I was struggling to keep it dry as I swam to shore, and though I think I did, I awoke just as I was crawling up onto dry land.

I don’t know what the dream means, but I can now say I’m glad I had it.  In my wallet I keep a fortune I got in a cookie several years ago.  It reads , “Your example will inspire others,” and if my caller is to be believed, it has.  If I didn’t have that dream, I likely would not have remembered the details of the call.  I’ll be woken up for that any time.