Dick Clark died today. I felt like driving … remembering life. I made a big looping route home today. I put the top down on my brand new 2006 Pontiac Solstice 2-Seater Convertible and I drove with my hair straight up, flying around over my head, with the radio blaring! It was, indeed, a sanguine moment!
I drove through the reservation from Chaparral across to Alma School, South on Alma School to Baseline. Picked up some papers. West on I-60 to the I-10 exchange. I took the Baseline exit, driving west on Baseline hoping that the little store where the orange freezes were made fresh would still be open.
As I headed west I saw a lone “hold-out” to the old Baseline Japanese Flower Farms of years gone by. It was kind of sad. Instead of all the beautiful farm after farm of lovely flowers, there are strip malls, gated communities and apartment buildings lining the once vital tourist attraction. The South Mountain Flower Gardens that stretched along Baseline Road from 48th Street to 32nd Street are nothing but a memory in anyone old enough to remember.
During the height of the Japanese Flower Garden’s glory days (1950s to the 1970s) the gardens were such an attraction that cars would drive along Baseline Road just to see their beauty and smell their fragrance. The Japanese Flower Gardens were a landmark, a tourist draw and a tradition for many. Now in the middle of suburbia is one flower shop, Mr. Nick Nakagawa’s Baseline Flowers. It was sad.
Then I thought, “Hey, I am going to drive by my old house and see what’s up with that.” It was horrendous. When I saw what had happened to the house, I was certain my leaving to go to Cali in 2004 was the right decision. The neighborhood was trashed even more than before, and house had these ugly oleanders for a hedge that looked quite dead. The beautiful bougainvilleas on the side of the house completely vanished and were replaced with a tacky brown fence. The beautiful orchid tree I panted remained. There was no hint of a single surviving rose bush. I was certain the house had served it purpose in my life and that leaving had served its purpose as well.
So back again driving west on Baseline, back to Dick Clark. America’s Oldest Teenager. How’d ya manage that, Dick? What a great way to be remembered. In all these years, I have never heard any “dirt” about Dick Clark. I thought about him while listening to all the oldies and all the kind things that everyone was saying as they called in to the radio. The sun was setting, it was cooling down. I thought, this is the way a life should be remembered. We won’t all be remembered on radio, TV or the internet … but what kind things will people say about us?
Have we lived our lives with purpose and meaning in ways that have impacted others for good?
Have we been responsible for the gifts and talents we’ve been given, have we used them for connectivity and community?
He rocked the world with music, fun, energy, and love.
How are we rocking our world, and the world around us?
Then, I had a personal self-coaching moment, in which I said to myself (back again to how leaving for Cali served me), “We all have memories and behaviors that have served us at some time in some way in the past, and they really did work for our good at that time. Maybe it was when we were five and we decided we’d never speak up again, so we wouldn’t get into trouble. Or maybe we decided we would never be alone again because it was too scary. But the truth is, that not every decision we have made is still valid, or necessary to protect us. As thinking adults we GET to decide if never speaking up again is serving us today, or it being afraid of being alone is still serving us today. The really cool and freeing thing is … we get to choose … we get to decide what works for us now.
And, for me, I know that leaving that house in 2004 and going to Cali and living in a hostel for 8 months, and re-careering in Cali served me. I am a far better individual for it. A far more enlightened person. A far more global person.
So, while we are forced to say goodbye to Dick today … we still have the opportunity to create a powerful present and an extraordinary future to live into. Let us rejoice in our being — our aliveness. Let us rejoice in our bounty and graces, our intellect, our health, our jobs, our children, our reach, our possibility.
Live Long and Prosper, My Friends.
I am always available for one-on-one business or personal coaching sessions in person, on the phone, via Skype, Google Talk, Google Voice or Yahoo Video Call. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a time for a session, or to ask a question. Text to: 480-343-8700.
Copyright © 2012, Rhonda Robbins. All rights reserved.
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