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franklin county times

Making mountains out of mole hills

By Staff
Kim West, Franklin County Times
It's funny what you remember from your high school years. I feel a little old just saying that, especially since I recently had a conversation with a classmate about planning our 10-year reunion. I'll never forget my high school math teacher, Mrs. Rose. I'm unsure of her first name, and I didn't fully grasp fun concepts such as factoring and matrices. But I do remember something she once said to me one day in class as I was struggling to solve a problem. She said, "Miss West, you are making mountains out of mole hills."
At first, I laughed. That's because even though my classmates and I didn't always understand trigonometry, it wasn't hard to understand her sense of humor. Even though I'm working a full-time job now in the so-called real world, I can still manage to find a way to turn something simple into something complicated.
For example, I had a 9:10 a.m. flight last Saturday to Chicago for a Phi Beta Lambda conference, and I already had my ticket, a free ride to the airport and the advice from my PBL advisor to bring a quart-size Ziploc bag for all my liquid containers in my carry-on bags.
I thought I was set, but then I had to cancel my ride to the airport and drive myself. What's hard about driving less than two hours to Nashville International Airport? Probably nothing for the average adult, but I managed to pick up three traffic citations , and I wasted valuable time trying to find the airport's long-term parking lot. After parking what seemed like a mile from the terminal, I trekked to my terminal with several bags in tow and confirmed what I already knew – I had missed my original flight. Luckily, Southwest Airlines let me go stand-by on the 11:10 a.m. flight and I was confident I would make that after quickly checking my bags and joining a short security line.
Since Murphy's Law seemed to be in effect that day, I was pulled out of the line and informed I had been "selected for additional screening." I'm a relatively calm person, so I knew that it was just a routine security check and figured I could still make my flight. After several minutes in the security pen, I grew wary of the bevy of curious stares from the security lines. Then I was led to a glass hallway that resembled a mime box, and that was my new home until I was escorted to the final area by a smiling, white-gloved security lady. I'm thankful she had the ability to perform the world's fastest pat-down, and I sped-walked to gate 21 because running tends to alarm airport security. When I arrived at the gate counter, the attendant cheerfully informed me that that my second attempt to fly away had just departed.
Nearly four hours later, I settled into a window seat and called my advisor to let her know that the pilot had just announced a weather delay. Fortunately, the it lasted less than 15 minutes, and by 6 p.m. I was taking a nap at our hotel.
So I'm hoping that if I run into Mrs. Rose at the reunion in a few years, I can thank her for her patience and understanding with me. And maybe by then I can tell her I no longer make mountains out of mole hills.