"Thanks For Your Time"

Discussion in 'General Conversation' started by H2O Mellon, Jun 8, 2006.

  1. H2O Mellon

    H2O Mellon New Member

    I don't know if you've seen this before, I just got it. I normally am not one to do the Fwd's via email, but this one is good, so here goes:

    It had been some time since Jack had seen the old man. College, girls, career, and life itself got in the way. In fact, Jack moved clear across the country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush of his busy life, Jack had little time to think about the past and often no time to spend with his wife and son. He was working on his future, and nothing could stop him. Over the phone, his mother told him, "Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday." Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days.

    "Jack, did you hear me?"

    "Oh, sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It's been so long since I thought of him... I'm sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago," Jack said.

    "Well, he didn't forget you. Every time I saw him he'd ask how you were doing. He'd reminisce about the many days you spent over 'his side of the fence' as he put it," Mom told him.

    "I loved that old house he lived in," Jack said.

    "You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man's influence in your life," she said

    "He's the one who taught me carpentry," he said. "I wouldn't be in this business if it weren't for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important...Mom, I'll be there for the funeral," Jack said.

    As busy as he was, he kept his word. Jack caught the next flight to his hometown. Mr. Belser's funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away. The night before he had to return home, Jack and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time.

    Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for a moment. It was like crossing
    over into another dimension, a leap through space and time The house was exactly as he remembered. Every step held memories. Everypicture, every piece of furniture....Jack stopped suddenly.

    "What's wrong, Jack?" his Mom asked.

    "The box is gone," he said

    "What box?" Mom asked.

    "There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top o f his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he'd ever tell me was 'the thing I value most,'" Jack said.

    It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Jack remembered
    it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it.

    "Now I'll never know what was so valuable to him," Jack said. "I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom."

    It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died. Returning home from
    work one day Jack discovered a note in his mailbox. "Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post office within the next three days," the note read.

    Early the next day Jack retrieved the package. The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention. "Mr.Harold Belser" it read. Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope. Jack's hands shook as he read the note inside.

    "Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Jack Bennett. It's the thing I valued most in my life." A small key was taped to the letter. His heart racing, as tears filling his eyes, Jack carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch.Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover. Inside he found these words engraved:

    "Jack, Thanks for your time! -Harold Belser."

    "The thing he valued most...was...my time."

    Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days. "Why?" Janet, his assistant asked."I need some time to spend with my son," he said. "Oh, by the way, Janet thanks for your time!"

    "Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take but by the moments that take our breath away,"
    chance of getting what you want, you

    "Thanks for your time."
  2. Dreadnaught

    Dreadnaught New Member

    That was a great story, Bryan! I have seen it before, but it still makes me think of all the time that I have wasted in my life.

  3. H2O Mellon

    H2O Mellon New Member

    Yes I am in the same boat. I will openly admit that I havent been the as many soccer games that I should have, as many baseball games that I should have, etc... I have been too busy trying to catch catfish & getting skunked. Reading that tonight drove home something that I have been thinking for a while, I need to spend more time at those games & stuff. I should be able to either fish around them or just not fish, doing that kind of stuff is more important, or at least needs to be more important. I don't want to be 50 & looking back on my life & thinking "I wish I had spent more time doing that than fishing". I wish I could be as good a father as my dad was to me. I think I have a new goal. :confused2:
  4. thegavel

    thegavel New Member

    West Des Moines, Iowa
    Very touching story, I have seen this one and many like it, but every time I read it I can only stop and think about all of the times I have been "too busy" for my family and all of those times I would rather go out with my friends rather then fish with my grandpa. it hurts, but in my 22 years I have learned that you can't live life with regrets.

    You have have to be the change you want to see in the world or it is going to keep changing without you!

    Today is the first day of the rest of your life, do you need a fresh start? take it today!!!
  5. H2O Mellon

    H2O Mellon New Member

    Great response Christopher
  6. Dano

    Dano New Member

    I wish my Dad was around to tell him, I understand why, now.

    Cats in the cradle and silver spoon little boy blue and the man in the moon, when ya coming home dad, I dont know when but we'll get together then Son, you know we'll have a good time then.

    I have wasted a lot of time.
  7. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Touching story for sure, But how do we change things..People have to work..I missed alot of my sons ball games while he was growing up, why because I had to put a roof over his head..I feel bad about it, but really I could you do nothing to change it other than working a job that would not provide for my family.
  8. H2O Mellon

    H2O Mellon New Member

    Thats basically what my wife just said. Sort of like the song, "Cats in the cradle".
  9. catsrking

    catsrking New Member

    We pretty much all have been either too busy for something or are guilty of wasting time. That is why it is good to be reminded with a story like this every now and then, because as humans we "get busy" and tend to forget not to be so busy and make time for things. Did that make any sense?
  10. flathead willie

    flathead willie Well-Known Member

    Yea Jack, I been there too. That's the main reason I started working for myself. I left home at 16 and had a brother that was three and a sister that was two. the next time I went home, they both hed Masters Degrees.
    I went in the service, traveled some, got into a maintenance career, and all that. We always had Christmas shutdown and the maint. people had to work while everyone else got two weeks off.
    Well my dad come to stay with me for a few days at Christmas 2000. It was the first time I'd spent the holiday with a relative since 1966. The next May my dad died. Now, the very biggest regret of my life is not seeing my brother and sister grow up and not being there to spend Christmas with them. Sure I made good money but now I know that I really messed up. In 2001-2002, I took a year off and spent it traveling around the country visiting my relatives. It was the best year I've had since I left home.
    Thanks for letting me reflect!
  11. Mutt

    Mutt Administrator Staff Member Supporting Member

    Beem there myself missed out on a lot of things due to chasing white lines out on the highway. Sometimes I wished I was never born with diesel fuel running through my veins. I spent the last 3 months of my dads life sitting beside him so I got to make some ammends doing that but it will never replace the time lost being able to fish with him or spend time with my kids as they were growing up. Now my kids are all adults and have thier lives and only one seems to make any time to spend with me these days. At least I can say one thing they wont live off the system so thats good.
  12. copycat

    copycat New Member

    New Jersey
    That is a very touching story. I have a hard time listening to that song "cats in the cradle" because it describes my father and me. We never had a close relationship until after his diagnosis with cancer in the late 1990s. The last time I spent with my dad was watching some old homemade movies of my dad, brothers and me. He died two weeks later on August 30th 1999. to the day one year later on August 30, 2000 my son was born. I believe in my heart that it was my father sending me a message "Don't miss out on your chance"

    My son and I are very close and I try everyday to spend time with him, and im not missing out on my chance!
  13. blindfly69

    blindfly69 New Member

    thanks bryan now im one hank williams song from tearin up lol
  14. shortshank

    shortshank New Member

    I think all of us can say hind sight is by far better than fore sight. At least I certanily qualify. My saving grace came from my dad when he had his first heart attack. I rushed to the hospital to apologize to him for being such a heathen when I was growing up. He said " I don't remember you being so bad". I said I pray God that's true. My dad said I know it is, he's a father too. So while we beat ourselves up with issues like this, it's ok, we do the best we can and when our kids put on our shoes, they will understand.
    All five of mine do.