As you may have guessed from my previous blogs, I love to read. Asking me to pick a favorite book or even author is tough, akin to asking a parent to name their favorite child. It can’t be done. I do have a favorite genre, however, and mysteries are my clear favorite. From classic detectives like Hercule Poirot and Sherlock Holmes to more modern sleuths such, as Inspector Morse from the Colin Dexter novels, I can’t get enough of a good whodunit.
The best part of the mystery genre is trying to solve the case before the final chapter. I make deductions along with the detective, trying to decide what is an actual clue while dismissing the Red Herrings. There are few things more satisfying than reading the final page and discovering that you have correctly identified the criminal.
As we sit at the dawn of a new year, the book closes on 2022. It was full of twists and turns, successes and failures, good times and bad. What will 2023 hold within its pages? I don’t know. It’s a mystery and I am ready to find out.
Two things I am sure of though. Gabe will be with me each step of the way and I will have plenty of Arin’s Good Girl Dog Treats in my pocket to reward him for being the Good Boy that he is. It’s no mystery that Gabe loves his treats and why I love giving them to him. They are tasty, healthy, and most importantly, shine the spotlight on a person’s ability instead of their disability.
Gabe is the Watson to my Holmes, the ever-reliable companion that is always by your side. But he is also a detective in his own right. He always has his nose to the ground sniffing out the next trail to follow or rabbit to chase. You have heard the saying, “barking up the wrong tree” which is used in detective fiction to describe when the protagonist misreads the clues and comes to the wrong conclusion. I may be biased, but Gabe never misses a mark. He may not always catch his squirrel, rabbit or mole, but he is always on the right trail and gives the chase 100 percent.
I know some people plan out their entire year well in advance, scheduling all of their activities from January through December not long after the ball drops in Time Square. They even schedule time for spontaneity. Gabe and are I not like that. There is no mystery, adventure or fun in a rigid schedule. We would rather go with the flow and see what adventures life takes us on together.
Even though I am not the plan-ahead type of person, I like what former NC State men’s basketball coach Jimmy Valvano said just before passing away from cancer in 1993. “There are three things we all should do every day: Laugh, think, cry. If you laugh, spend some time in thought and have your emotions move you to tears, you have had a heck of a day.” Those are the three main ingredients needed to start a great adventure.
Gabe and my adventures will not likely all have happy endings. Sometimes life, like books, doesn’t always turn out the way you want it to and that’s ok. No matter what happens in 2023, we have the promise found in Jeremiah 29:11. “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”
So, I encourage everyone to embrace life’s mysteries that will be revealed in 2023. Like Gabe, chase down your metaphorical rabbit, and even if you don’t reach your goals, you can be satisfied knowing you tried your best, living life to its fullest.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!