Monday, February 9, 2009

Don't let the Mountains Slow Your Success

I love collecting money from people who won’t answer their phone. It is one of the warm and fuzzy feelings that come with owning ones own company.

Last night, while drifting off to la-la-land, I felt an urge saying go… go… go to their place of business and they’ll be so happy to see me they’ll willing pay me the amount they owe without hesitation.

When the opportunity clock went off at 6:00 AM I was off. I did my morning work and made my prospect calls. By noon I set off on my journey to wealth and prosperity.

I drove the 35 minutes to the outskirts of Cleveland in no time at all. I parked the car and headed for the front door. My wheelchair was flying until I turned onto the sidewalk. There in front of me was a mountain of snow blocking the sidewalk, the leftovers of shoveled driveways that blocked the concrete pathway to my riches.

Being the eternal optimist, “I didn’t come all this way for nothing!” rang in my head. I said the words of an old sage, “If you can’t climb the mountain dig through it, go under it, or make a way around it.” AHH! There was my answer. I would go around it. The road looked clear so I headed down it until I got to the ramp by the oncoming street. It was so narrow and broken up I knew it was a certain disaster. With a determined outlook I headed back to my mountain. There had to be another way around it. I spied a narrow strip of grass that lead around the natural barricade. Figuring that the ground was still frozen I headed off the sidewalk on to the unknown terrain. All was going well for about a foot then without warning, the wheels started spinning. Oh boy I thought! I am here in Cleveland and stuck like a pig on a skewer waiting for the barbecue fire. Back and forth I went as mud stuck to my wheels. No matter what effort I took I was not leaving that spot. What would Louis and Clark do? What would Davey Crockett do? How would NASA circumvent such and obstacle?

I was getting a little cold as I reached for my trusted Blackberry. There in the distance was a Fire Station. I pressed 411 and said, “Can I have the non-emergency fire department Number please… Over the next few moments I will grilled with: “You are what?” “You are where?” “Why did you leave the sidewalk?” Obviously the person on the other end of the phone had never had a mountain to climb, or forged ragging river. My request was reasonable, “Send a fireman over to pull me out of the goo.” “We will send a policeman.” was the response on the other end of the line… But ma’am, I rebutted, the Fire Department is right across the street! My plea was to no avail. “We will send someone to rescue you shortly.”

I sat there thinking of camp songs to sing as the moments turned into what seemed like days.

Finally, I heard a truck. I turned to see two men driving by drinking a beer after a hard day on the ladder they had strapped to the top of their van. No sooner had my heart leaped for the joy of freedom from my mud doom then they drove right on by.
But alas, as they drifted down the road another twenty feet the orange brake lights shone forth the message that help had arrived.

A tall angel got out of the van in work clothes. “You need help!” Never had those words seemed more appropriate. “Sure do!” I said, as I tried one more time to free myself from the bog. He yanked and yanked. Right then left then backward then forward. All the time the cakes of mud were building on the bottom of the chair I would soon be bringing into my wife’s house. After a few minutes my wheels caught and out of the mud I scampered. I had a new hero… A Good Samaritan had stop to help a mountain man back to the main trail. I was free!

As I packed up base camp and headed back to the arms that loved me I came to terms that today I would not collect the money for the bills and that maybe the sounds I heard the night before telling me to “GO!” were the sounds of the steak I ate an hour before I went to bed.

The mountain had won today but in the world of enterprise there would be tomorrow.

If only they had paid!

Jon Mullender

1 comment:

  1. That's an amazing story! Your determination and optimism is inspiring.
    You'll get 'em.