When a stoplight is magical

Jenny age 3 with her Dad, Bob Horner.

As I was sitting at a stoplight yesterday after I left work, I thought of my Dad. I think of my Dad a lot when I’m at a stoplight, actually. When I was a little girl and was sitting at a stoplight with my Dad, he had me convinced that he was a powerful psychic who could predict the future.

I went a lot of places with my Dad. Even though my parents divorced when I was 8 years old, my Dad came over every night for dinner and used to come over on the weekends and do yard work and read the Sunday paper. I know what you’re thinking. It is kind of weird. Back in 2015, I blogged about what growing up was like with this unusual arrangement. You can read about that below.

Wait…your parents aren’t married?

I was the youngest. So while my other brothers and sisters were involved in school or work or friends, I hung out with Dad while he did some errands. It usually ended with a special treat like a milkshake at Bart’s Drive-in. I was kind of an impatient kid. Especially if there were milkshakes involved. I hated sitting there in the car waiting for the light to turn green. Dad began to make it a game, though. He would say, “Ok, ok, it’s coming, it’s going to change riiiiiiiiight, NOW!” And unbelievably, it changed to green. He was a genius, I thought. A magician. A psychic. I was delighted when we played this game over and over again and he was never wrong.

Of course, as I got older, I figured it out. Looking at the red light, you could see the green light facing the other direction for those cars. When it turned yellow…that’s when Dad’s game would begin. And when it turned red for those cars, is precisely the moment when he would yell, “NOW” and our light would turn green. Now, seeing all angles of a stoplight probably doesn’t work in a big city with multiple lanes coming from all different directions and several traffic lights, but in our little town it worked every time.

As an adult, when I sit at a light in that same little town,  I catch myself always watching for that yellow light on the other side. I think of my Dad and smile.

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