A story, in multiple parts, in which this is the first part. The story gets better as it goes along. I promise. Stick with it.

Once in a while, you are the keeper of a story so good that each time you tell it, your audience, fighting back tears of laughter, begs you to write it down.  This, my friend, is not that story.  But it is a long story.  And because of that, lately, when I tell it, I find that at about the midpoint of the story, I get tired of telling it and I start glossing over details, which makes it a less good story.  So, I am writing it down, folks.

This story starts with our heroine attempting to better herself by registering for a week long silent meditation retreat.  This is a good thing.  The retreat is close to home, but is run by people out of town.  It is run by people out of the country, actually.  It’s run by Canadians.

Now, I am ashamed to admit this, but it seems that I have a bias- a stereotype, when it comes to those folks north of the border.  Guilty of generalization, I know, but my impression of Canadians is that they are, well, nice.  Nice, friendly, helpful, all healthy with their free healthcare- this is my impression of Canadians.  So, I was ill-prepared for my interaction with the particular Canadian who handled my registration.  

The website, it seems, botched my registration, or at least it seemed to have registered me for a different retreat than I wanted, with different dates, a retreat-that-didn’t-exist.  This was troublesome because this retreat-that-didn’t-exist cost me over $300.  And the solution proposed to me by the woman in charge of registration, who couldn’t find a record of my registration, was to re-register.  I was not eager to do this because my credit card had already been charged for the retreat-that-didn’t-exist.  What I wanted, and this didn’t seem unreasonable to me, but you be the judge, was for the charge for the retreat-that-didn’t-exist to be taken off my credit card so that I could re-register for a retreat that did, in fact, exist.  

In my mind, this was simple, but I couldn’t seem to get the registration woman to understand what I was talking about.  Finally, after weeks went by with no action or understanding, I decided to just ask for my money back and forget the whole thing, thank you very much.  As soon as I sent the e-mail saying that I was no longer interested in the retreat, I received a flurry of e-mails and phone calls.  The message was loud and clear.  It was a misunderstanding!  We want you to come to our retreat!  We are Canadians!  We are nice!

I signed up.

(End part one.  Yes, I know that this first part was kind of disappointing.  It is to be continued.  Stick with it.  Part two is here.)

Go ahead and click on the teeny envelope icon and send this post to a friend. Don't be jerky and claim that you wrote it because I wrote it, damn it.

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