Yesterday was H-day for the A-Z Challenge. Again, my title is a major cop-out, and for that I apologize.
I totally missed H-Day because I was traveling on Amtrak. A trip that should have lasted 12 hours stretched into 21.
Here's the thing: Spring in North Dakota inevitably means flooding. Apparently a segment of the tracks we were supposed to take was flooded so we were shifted to another set of tracks which was meant primarily for freight traffic. Because we were just visitors on the freight tracks, freight trains took priority. We ended up sitting on shunts for hours waiting for freight trains to pass. We were told that our "sister train," (the train that runs the same route we were taking, Chicago to Seattle) that had left 24 hours prior to us, still hadn't reached its destination and was 28 hours late. Not encouraging news.
However, I find that sometimes these kinds of situations can result in something unexpected, even if it's only that you meet people you never would have met otherwise. I met an interesting young woman studying opera on the west coast. She'd gone home for spring break in the midwest to visit family, and was heading back to school. We talked and she shared her extensive DVD collection with me to pass the time.
It was a brief little situational comararadie and, as any other writer knows, those kinds of things can be inspirational gold. Sometimes you meet real people who are so much better than anything you could create on your own and they inspire new characters.
So although it was a long trip and by the time we reached my station I was exhausted and in desperate need of a shower, I didn't feel at all cheated or upset. I felt like I'd been given this secret little gift of suspended time and place.
Have you ever found good in a situation that could have been bad?