Mar. 13, 2022


I had seen patients all day and it was dreary , cold, and rainy. My family met in the office parking lot and we started on our nine hour jaunt. I tried to enlist help in the driver's seat but to no avail and so on we went. They all slept most of the way except for occasional bickering . I was exhausted. I was wiped out after about 8 hours as the windshield wipers chanted to me all the way in unison,' You are tired, You are tired! '

It was many years ago ,and yet I do remember it was a Thursday . Our oldest son Joshua needed to go up to Dubuque University to look into the possibility of playing basketball for them. He wanted to study aviation ,and we were told they had a great flight program.

We were an hour or so shy of our destination and for me it was game over. I secured a room and my brain was Jell-O. I had asked another earlier about my route up to Dubuque. I wanted to confirm as well as ask another question .

I thanked him for his help and started to turn away. I forgot the main reason that had walked down to the main office.

I staggered down to the front office. I look haggard and worn. I could barely keep my eyes open. At the front desk was a slim young man that looked like he could be on the cover of GQ magazine. After saying hello I asked him to confirm my plans and route the next morning. All I had to do was drive around the Cracker Barrell restaurant and head 60 miles straight north on highway 60. No way! Even I couldn't screw that up!

I told him I had another question and he crouched and held up as if hold a catcher's mitt . He told me he was ready. I asked him if he could see the clock on the wall. Now I would like to think of myself as a wordsmith .This was not my best moment. To this day, I wish I had a copy of this conversation on video. I told him it said it was 7 minutes till tomorrow and he smiled and told me once again I was spot on. I asked what time is it up there in Dubuque right now. He told me it was the same time up there as well as all of Iowa. He smiled as he answered what was I am sure in his mind a silly question. I thanked him again and went out the door and off to see if I could find our room all by myself. I apologize to all the other residents of my beloved home state of Indiana. I left him I feel with the impression that all Hoosiers are like Forrest Gump.

I had shared this story many times in the office with patients. I think by doing so it reminds me to be a little more open to the fact that sometimes a silly question is not at all but they know in reality much more about the subject than we do and are even aware.

I wish I had the time and energy to explain that I am from a place where about about 15 miles away is a different time zone, even though it is the same state. He would be surprised to hear and learn of this. He might even at first question this knowing that this could indeed cause a state of confusion. Maybe he would google and find my question was not so silly once he knew where I was coming from.

I feel I am a much better doctor than I was years ago. I have had cataracts and cataract surgery in both eyes. Before I was taught about them from books , lectures, and articles. They are no match as to trying to look through them and laying on an operating table looking up and into the various colored lights as they cut on your precious eyes. I can now easily answer from my own journey and what at one time would have threw me for a loop, now makes perfect sense.

It will shield you from a state of confusion or maybe now a country of confusion. It will keep you from being a basket case and you will be able to dispense more grace not because of what you know but because of who you know.

Life has many lessons ahead for all of us that we cannot learn any other way. We all have a long way to go and it is much later than you think. I want you to read you Bible and let God share with your stories and lessons that will help you on your journey as is its purpose.

My God , in you and you alone we trust. Please love and help others through us. Amen

Everything's got a moral, if only you can find it.

Lewis Carroll

Trust one who has gone through it.


He who knows best knows how little he knows.

Thomas Jefferson

Judge people by their questions rather than by their answers.


There are places you are better off not visiting. There are people you should not be alone with. There are circumstances you need to avoid. In your heart , you will know what they are. If you are wise, you will pay attention.!

Bob Barnes