Over the Hill on the Yellow Brick Road, I passed an aging ambulance in front of a deli. It was lunchtime, so the driver was inside getting a hot pastrami sandwich. I started a conversation with the ambulance.
You know, I’ve always wanted to talk to an ambulance. This is an honor.
AGING AMBULANCE: Thank you. But…why?
Well…I have a dream I don’t share with many people. I’ve always wished I could have an ambulance of my very own.
AGING AMBULANCE: You’re kidding.
Nope. I started dreaming about it when my children were in elementary school and had playdates in my house. I worried what would happen if someone got hurt. It would have been so calming if I knew an ambulance was parked in my driveway at all times.
AGING AMBULANCE: I’m touched.
And now that my kids are young adults and my husband and I are older, having our own ambulance would totally calm our nerves.
AGING AMBULANCE: Hmmm…
I mean, for example, last week my husband had bad stomach cramps and chest pains late at night. It turned out to be a stomach virus. But since he’s a bit older, when he was in pain, we were concerned it might have been something more serious. Having an ambulance in our driveway would have been a dream come true.
AGING AMBULANCE: Hmmm…
Plus I’m a hypochondriac.
AGING AMBULANCE: Well then, I’ll let you in on something that embarrasses me. As I get older, my exciting, dramatic life as an ambulance doesn’t feel exciting anymore. It feels frenetic. The sound of my siren is just overwhelming noise and gives me a headache.
I can relate. It’s embarrassing to admit, but large cities feel that way to me these days. I used to find all the sounds and crowds of people stimulating. Now I’d rather be in a quiet place. I’m changing.
AGING AMBULANCE: Me too. When I have to speed down a highway to get to a fire, I just want to go home. Or when I have to weave through traffic to get to an emergency, it’s not exhilarating anymore. I’m changing.
AGING AMBULANCE: But…I still want to be helpful. Somehow. Somewhere.
Well then, dare I ask? Would you consider a permanent job sitting at the end of my driveway?
AGING AMBULANCE: What would your neighbors say?
Nothing. They know me.
AGING AMBULANCE: Okay then! I’m in!
This is wonderful! I guess you just never know when a dream will come true.