Gone to Pot

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freeimages.com / Zsuzsa N.K.

Sometimes doing a good deed can get you into trouble. And when it does, look to the hills from whence cometh your help … or pot, in my case. Yes, pot!

One day, an out-of-town friend asked me to check on her 97-year-old mother, Estelle. “Mother has a box of pots and pans that she wants to donate to Goodwill. Would you drop them off for her?” “Sure,” I replied, looking forward to my time with Estelle, a comedic storyteller.

Estelle and I passed several hours together, reveling with glee at her “misadventures” in life. “What’s your secret to longevity?” I asked. “You’re so full of pep.”

“Ask me when I’m a 100,” she teased, her blue eyes twinkling. “I’m just a kid!”

As I was getting ready to leave, Estelle pointed to a box of kettles and quipped, “Now, don’t go to pot!” “I won’t,” I cackled. When I got to my car, I put the box in the trunk and forgot about it.

A few days later, I called on another elderly woman, Ruby. She was making supper and asked if I would take over. “Sure,” I replied. “There are snow peas in the kettle ready to be steamed,” she instructed.

I turned on the burner and let the snow peas steam away. As I was getting her plate ready, I smelled something foul in the air. The kettle had boiled dry!

The peas were good, but the kettle was ruined. For all her wealth, Ruby was a notorious penny pincher and would be devastated if she knew about the ruined kettle.

“Help me, God,” I prayed, then burst out laughing. I’ve called on heaven’s help in many a scrape, but never over a bunch of peas. I’ve really gone to pot this time! “Peas, pretty peas,” I added to my prayer.

Heaven must have been laughing with me because suddenly inspiration hit. I had a pot just like Ruby’s–the same size even–in my car! I got the pot and put the stinky, warped kettle in my trunk. Nobody but me, God, the angels–and now you–will ever know the difference.

It’s true: God meets our needs. Even a replacement kettle for a pot runneth dry!

Copyright 2017 by Marion Amberg


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