The Wise Man From the Cruise Ship

“Whoa, that fell right in,” he said.

We both peered into the sewer grate, me and a nice older man who was off a cruise ship. There near the edge, submerged in the water, was the padlock.

“It made a perfect arch when it fell off the cart,” I said.

“What’s the lock for?” he asked, his back a bit crooked, shoulders a bit slumped, face a little sweaty like he’d had a hard day exploring our little national park.

“We’re starting a new business. Down here.” I motioned at the cruise ship tender line, the series of small out buildings that people like me had staked a claim in for a rental fee, trying to make a business, to become something different or become something more.

“Let’s see if we can get the grate off,” he said, bending and grabbing the heavy metal bars. He tugged. “Nope.”

We tugged together. It didn’t move even an inch.

“That’s so nice of you to try,” I said. “We can buy another.”

“It flew off perfectly,” he said, laughing.

“I wish someone had videotaped it. It was a beautiful fall.”

He kept laughing. “It just went perfectly in.”

We stopped staring at each other’s laughing faces and back down at the lock in the murky water.

“It’s not a bad omen,” he said. “It’s a good one.”

“How is that?”

“Because you’re laughing. If you can laugh? You can get through anything.”

“Even failures?” I asked.

I think I might have made him pause for a second, maybe taken him aback, but then he smiled again, standing up really straight. “Failures especially.” He winked. “But you won’t fail.”

Shaun goes fishing

Shaun’s pretty amazing, honestly. Just like that cruise ship guy.

We have a lot of new things that I’m afraid of failing at and it would be awesome if you checked them out.

First there’s a new LIVING HAPPY blog where we talk about our journey toward happiness despite all the chaos that is our life. We delve into a bit of psychology, too. Also, all the writing tips are over there.

And I have a local news blog.

Finally, we have a super cool new true crime podcast, DUDE NO! I hope you’ll check it out. Our second episode comes out tomorrow. It’s always on Tuesdays.

Author: carriejonesbooks

I am the NYT and internationally-bestselling author of children's books, which include the NEED series, FLYING series, TIME STOPPERS series, DEAR BULLY and other books. I like hedgehogs and puppies and warm places. I have none of these things in my life.

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