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How Time Flies When I Am In A Hurry
by James Snyder
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Have you ever noticed that when you are on vacation time goes by rapidly? According to my calculations (and I'm the first to admit I didn't do well in calculus), the average minute during vacation time is less than 20 seconds. This is one reason time goes by so quickly on vacation.

The other reason, as everyone knows, is that during a vacation week there are no days beginning with the letter ‘‘T.'' Now, you know why your vacation went by so quickly this summer. There are always reasons if you are willing to dig hard enough.

Now, if this is true, the question plaguing my mind is: where does all that time go?

Have you ever noticed that when you are in a hurry to go somewhere it usually takes twice as long to get there? It does not matter what time of day it is, or which day it is for that matter, for when you are running a tad late for some appointment across town, Old Father Time insists that you go through an intricate obstacle course. It is his way of having a little fun. After all, the old boy needs some kind of diversion.

For example, if I am leisurely driving across town with plenty of time on my hands, I never hit a red light. Every traffic light is green and there have been times when I have arrived at my destination 10 minutes before I left.

On the other hand, if I am in a hurry and running just the slightest late, this is immediately brought to the attention of Father Time. He rubs his hands with glee and begins his work. Immediately, every traffic light in town is on the alert for my arrival. Their instruction from Father Time is quite simple. ‘‘When you see Rev. Snyder coming, turn red.''

Sometimes all the attention Father Time gives me embarrasses me.

Then there is the train on 17th Street. I can travel this street for weeks and never see that train. There have been times when I have wondered if the train has ceased running.

Then, I am in a hurry and everything changes. It has yet to fail me. When running late, the train always runs slow and, on my honor, the longest and slowest train is reserved for me.

Perhaps the worse time trick Old Father Time plays on me is at the checkout counter. The checkout personnel are especially trained by Father Time. In one week alone, I found 17 days that I lost during my vacation in 1978, just at a checkout counter.

Last week my wife and I were in a hurry to some appointment. It really does not matter what the appointment was, we never really got there, thanks to Old Father Time. On the way to this appointment, I said something quite foolish to my wife. (What husband hasn't?)

‘‘Honey,'' I said as innocently as any husband can, ‘‘I need to stop at the grocery store for something.'' Right then a huge red light went off to alert Father Time of my intention. That wasn't enough. I also told her, as I jumped out of the car, ‘‘This will only take a minute.'' With that, I bounded into the store.

This put Old Father Time into hysterics. He lives for this kind of situation.

When I got in the store, I knew exactly where the item was that I needed. Voila ... somehow, store management had a premonition that I would be coming in this day and that I would be in a hurry. They did the only thing they could do in that situation — completely rearrange the store — all in my honor.

Now, not only was I in a hurry but also I could not find the product I was after. If I wasn't a man, I could asked for directions.

My wife, tired of waiting in the car, came in and found the item for me. Now all I needed to do was get it through the checkout.

Have you ever noticed that no matter what line you get in it is always the slowest? Even if I am the only one in the checkout, I have no better luck. Usually in that situation, I get the trainee on her first day working all alone.

Am I getting harder of hearing or are young people, especially young women, speaking a different language? It took me 10 minutes to realize that the young trainee was merely saying, ‘‘Hello, how are you?''

Of course, I wanted to pay for my purchase with a check. It was then that Old Father Time roared with devilish delight. To use a check at many places requires 16 independent forms of identification and a note from your mother. At the time, I only had 15.

By the time my wife and I got to our car, it was too late for our important appointment. Father Time won another one.

Time is important and often we are guilty of wasting it. The biggest area where people waste time is regarding their relationship with God.

The Apostle Paul warned of this in his letter to the Romans. ‘‘And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.'' (Romans 13:11 KJV.)

Read more articles by James Snyder or search for other articles by topic below.

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