Blog Your Blessings: Corn

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Corn. Miles and miles of corn. Tall green corn lining the roadways marked the transition from Connecticut to New York and its strange route numbers, endless winding roads, expansive vistas, large, unpeopled farmhouses, and more corn. Corn glowed in the grey light of a mid-summer afternoon that was for me as lonely as it was warm and quiet and endless.

And it was beautiful. I would roll along and admire a terraced hilltop of corn and wonder what it was like to be up there and then I would find myself exactly there and wondering where I was.

I had printed the Google Maps directions from Woodbury to Woodstock in the faraway other world of New York, and I kept them, crumpled, in my hand the whole way. I followed them to the T, yet I was always sure I had missed a turn, misread a turn as a curve, overlooked a junction, forgotten something. The roads were so long.

Cars would roll by, and I would think, "You know where you are going...and I wish I knew where I were going...and I wish you would stop and tell me if this is right." But they were gone before the thoughts were ever complete. I was alone in the corn and I felt that solitude through and through. I did not completely like it. Perhaps I would not have minded if I were still in Connecticut, but this was a new place. And it felt so foreign.

From time to time I did stop and ask for help reading the directions. The people I spoke to would say, "Jim's going that way; follow Jim," or, "I'm going that way; follow me, and when I turn right at the light, you turn left," or, "Yes, this is Route 199,"....

I found that I was never lost. I never made a wrong turn. I got it right. The people who helped me simply affirmed that, yes, you're on the right road; keep going. The roads seemed needlessly long and sometimes maddeningly circuitous, but they were the right roads, nevertheless. Driving through the corn, I made this discovery: that I had given up on my own judgment, my own sense, too soon. Despite all the evidence showing I was getting it right, things were as they should be, some overwhelming doubt sought to turn me back, to call it a failure, to say You Can't Do This. (In the corn, I discovered a pattern that has directed my life for as long as I can remember. How many times had I given up on myself, my dreams, because that doubt shouted me down?) Strangers and their few words silenced that voice on this Saturday afternoon in the corn.

In the end, when I arrived in Woodstock without the name of the place where I would find my friend, two old friends would provide the instructions to get me the last 60 yards of this journey. They would tell me I got it right and to go a little more to make it right, completely right. And I would.

And I would laugh at myself that I required a committee of strangers and a few friends to help me go the whole right road to the exact right place. I laugh again, happy now to know it really is possible to get there. Happy, too, that I didn't go it alone after all.

Blog Your Blessings


  1. really nice wright up!

  2. Splendid image and very significant text, Sandy.
    Sometimes we ask ourselves: but what was there before the Universe?

  3. Being able to do things "on our own" isn't all it's cracked up to be. I find it immensely satisfying to start up a conversation with a stranger and to leave them feeling more necessary in the life of another than they felt before we spoke. I like knowing that we rely on one another for the little day to day things. It's comforting.

    I have to tell you the funniest directions I've ever heard! When my dad and mom were in the backwoods of Virginia, he stopped to ask a farmer how far it was to a certain town. The farmer replied,
    "Walllll, son. I figger it's about three eyesees down the road."
    "Three what? What's an eyesee?"
    Wallll...ya look as fer as your eye sees...then when ya git thar... ya look agin."

    Anyway, I digress. Lovely post, as always!! Good food for thought, and a great read!

  4. It seems to me that no matter which route you take, Sandy, you will find your way to the loveliest place.

  5. And Sandy, had you been a man - you would have experienced the same angst, but never would have stopped to ask for directions. :) Pappy

  6. then there was the stranger up there sending strangers your way to help you. beautiful writeup. enjoyed reading it and relating. think we all feel this way at times. that's what friends and family are for. although friends usually are the ones who bring us through....

  7. Great post. Just think if you were not lost you wouldn't have been able to enjoy God's beautiful countryside! I always enjoy reading your blog.

    Cascia @ Healthy Moms

  8. Anonymous10:43 AM

    What a wonderful story and lesson for life; brought a smile to my face and heart!

  9. once again thank you for persevering! I am so glad that you took the ride thru the corn to come see me! This wonderful post and pic is the result along with the fun we had at Kevin's with Tom and the kids. You make the simple and mundane, wonderful and the wonderful, exquisite, and i will run out of descriptive words before I run out of praises for you!

  10. Sometimes communion with a "committee of strangers" is just what our soul needs. I'm glad you got where you were going.

    Beautiful story - D

  11. Sandy, I love this story! I've always found people willing to help. A kindness done and paid forward!

    I've passed an award on to you. Come and get it... :)

  12. What a lovely post Sandy. I'm glad you didn't get lost along the way. Such beautiful, bountiful sights to behold. Now I want some fresh corn LOL!!!

    Hugs, G

  13. Anonymous3:51 PM

    Your story got a lot of thoughts firing in my mind.

    Had you traveled there in the day, you could have just followed the scent of the flower children's pot - my contemporaries, but I was the one with a short haircut, in the Navy.

    I camped not too far from
    there for my NJ contract last year.

    "... where the corn is as high as an elephant's eye" was a different state.

    I just got the whole set of the Gunslinger novels by Stephen King. The connection? Well, Children of the Corn, of course.

  14. It is possible to get there, Sandy. And you have proven it with grace. Such a beautifully written, evocative post.

    Isn't it funny how strangers can affirm us in ways that those who know us better (in some ways) simply can't?

  15. Anonymous7:36 PM

    I meant in "The Day", when flower power was... powerful.

  16. Lovely and thought-provoking words... and so true. Thanks!

  17. There's an entire philosophy in your post today... about mapping a course, setting a path, and having the guidance of others while maintaining it... and reaching that goal... but you knew that.

    A goodly blessing indeed!

  18. Anonymous10:02 AM

    What a wonderful post. You hear so much negative about the world we live in and this was a great reminder of "the kindness of strangers".

  19. What a wonderful blessing you have shared this weekend, when you get time come over to the Cafe for my blessing and Weekend Snapshot sweetie, have a good trip.

  20. Anonymous7:48 PM

    Your post was great in more than one way. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

  21. Very meaningful essay. Glad you arrived in time. When you get a chance, come by to read about my blessing.

  22. Corn? This is a maps blessing if I ever read one. LOL

    I cannot wait to read what you did in Woodstock and all that you saw.

    Have a great week.


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