I kicked myself, and profited a lesson


We had lovely weather around December 25, 

the temperature was just above zero, and I was cycling (dressed appropriately) every  day.  I can’t say I get to do that every year.  Afterwards I tend to relax and warm up; coffee in hand.

img_0323One of my household chores is putting the garbage cans out on garbage day, preferably before the truck arrives, otherwise it’s too late.  Somehow I thought our garbage day was delayed, and (forehead slap) I didn’t check.

Lazing a bit after Christmas Day,  I looked out and realized the garbage truck had already done our side of the street and was looping around to pick up the other side.

I dashed outside grabbed our garbage can, and ran to the end of the driveway, as the truck pulled up to a stop on the far side of the road.

The driver was concentrating on maneuvering the  mechanical arm to pick up my opposite neighbours containers, he was looking away from me.

I had time to push my container 20 feet ahead of his truck so it would be grabbed, but I stalled, and waved instead. Poor choice, and one I soon regretted.

He never saw me and drove away, the opportunity passed.  I was right there, but I blew it.  I felt frustrated with myself.

I had lots of opportunity to kick myself for a week until next pickup, and in between I realized there was a lesson in this small event.  So not all is lost. 

I had missed my opportunity,

it had been easy to grab, but I had failed to act.  Something to remember.


However this story leads to another which is a happier story. 

The year 2020 arrived in the Okanagan valley, and the sunshine shone, and lo, there was no ice on the lakes!   Perfect for a New Year’s Day Polar Bear Swim ! 

The opportunity to do a polar bear swim in the ice-free lakes was an opportunity that many in the valley were seizing.  My son and I planned to watch the 350 or so brave opportunists, and enjoy a bonfire along the lakeshore. I had thought about trying it but my kidney transplant is still only eight months old, I didn’t know if it was risky.

My son, Dave, jumped in the car with a towel and said – I’m doing it!

Joining the screams of delight, and shock 




Dave ran down the beach in the crowd of all ages and plunged right in, lasting a full five minutes before heading up to rub himself dry and stand by a bonfire.  I was grinning and taking pictures.

I thought it was cool (no pun intended) that he seized the opportunity, and enjoyed himself and I was there when he plunged in.

Sometimes it seems we fail to see an opportunity as what it is, until it fails to be one. 

The message to me in these two events was that opportunities can be fleeting, and I know I miss many, but I hope to improve especially for those experiences like Dave had, that are memorable and fun.

Hopefully my judgement will improve in 2020. Thank you for taking the time to read. 


About dfolstad58

I live in the South Okanagan. BC. I enjoy reading, exercise, toastmasters. spending time with my son, my daughter, & her husband , and my patient wife. I try to respond personally to every comment on my blog, and in this way I hope to get to know my readers a little bit and and am able to thank readers for their encouragement on what they liked and suggestions on what they would like to see me try in order to improve.
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19 Responses to I kicked myself, and profited a lesson

  1. Those kinds of events can teach us a lot if we’re paying attention. 🙂


  2. Sandra J says:

    I do the same thing with garbage day, I can hear him coming towards the street about 4 blocks away, so it gives me time to get it out there. Your message is such a good one. Sometimes you do not get a second try. Hope you are feeling well, and recovering well.


  3. Sandra J says:

    I do the same thing with garbage day, I can hear him coming towards the street about 4 blocks away, so it gives me time to get it out there. Your message is such a good one. Sometimes you do not get a second try. Hope you are feeling well, and recovering well.


  4. James McEwan says:

    So true. I had to laugh at you chasing down the truck. We have a similar problem here at holiday times, Christmas . New Year etc. But we have four bins. Black general waste. Blue -Paper, Red/maroon for foodstuff and garden waste and grey for recyclable cans and containers, plastics and glass.
    Now there is a schedule – if only people would follow it.
    Black, next week – Red/Blue, Next week Black, then next week Grey/Red and so on.
    No one knows which one to put out after a holiday – the pavements (sidewalks) get crowded out.


  5. Hi there. Speaking of opportunity, tonight we’re going with friends to a restaurant that serves Georgian food (the country Georgia, not the USA state). This will be a first for me.

    See ya!

    Neil Scheinin


  6. Happy New Year. I’m so impressed that your son took the new year’s plunge. I’ve never had the desire or the courage, but I enjoy watching all of the enthusiasm!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Chocoviv says:

    Wishing you a happy new year!


  8. Life is still full of wonderful opportuniites, those you miss are lessons to learn :)). Brave son!! That is something I could never do!


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