After Easter “The best laid schemes o’ Mice an’ Men gang aft agley”

26 May

My Take

DiVoran Lites

DiVoran and David Bowers

DiVoran and David Bowers

My brother and I on Easter circa 1949. Mother made the dark blue and white dotted Swiss dress for me. David wore that sweater all winter for several winters. This story isn’t about us; it’s about this past Easter many years later.


Do you like routines and schedules? I like them so much I plan carefully so that they won’t go agley, as Robert Burns, the Scottish poet, put it:The best laid schemes o’ Mice an’ Men gang aft agley.” (“To a Mouse”)

People in our church want me, as the children’s Sunday school teacher to put on an Easter egg hunt every year. So I bought the eggs last year. We already had the baskets to gather them into. I got the candy in the last weeks before Easter, but had to go back for more. I spent an hour or two putting candy in the eggs.

The plan was to go out on the playground during adult Sunday school and “hide” the eggs, but when we left the house, a misty rain was falling onto the windshield of the car and my plans began  to go agley so I asked Bill to be praying about what I should do. He surprised me by praying that the rain would stop in time for the hunt. But, still, when could I hide the eggs?

In the middle of praise team practice, I recalled that I hadn’t brought my camera. I didn’t want to miss taking pictures of the beautiful children in their Easter finery, so I asked Bill to go home and get it. I could hide eggs while he was gone.

It had stopped raining by the time praise team practice was over, but three feisty boys were using the playground and I didn’t want to make them go inside. I decided I’d just let them and the two girls who had arrived hide the eggs with me.

The girls and I walked out and I started to get the eggs out of the trunk of the car, but guess where the car was? It was with Bill going home to get the camera. The girls and I went back inside. Church started. We’d have to make do with the kids hiding the eggs during the time they were supposed to be hunting for them. Finally, it was time. By now, we had five girls and three boys. It seemed everyone was having a good time except for Trivona. She’s being reared by an aunt who loves her and who is a capable and efficient person.

“Why do we have to hide our own eggs,” Trivona asked.

“It’s fun, isn’t it?” I asked hopefully.

“The Easter egg hunt we went to yesterday was more fun—the children didn’t have to hide their own eggs,” she answered.

“It’s a long story.” I patted her head patronizingly.

She looked up at me with interest in her big brown eyes.

“You don’t want to hear the story do you?”

“Yes I do.”

“Oh, well…” I told it all, the rain, the car.“Is that a good story?” I asked when I finished.

“No,” she said.

“Oh, then I’m sorry I told you,” wishing I hadn’t bored her.

“It was a good story,” she said carefully, “but if you plan better next time, the children won’t have to hide their own eggs.”

“Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.” James 4:14.

Someday maybe Trivona will read Robert Burns and surely, then, she will understand.

14 Responses to “After Easter “The best laid schemes o’ Mice an’ Men gang aft agley””

  1. elysesalpeter May 26, 2014 at 9:46 pm #

    Ugh, this was painful – I would have been stressed. I mean, if it’s just about me, I can be much more mellow, but when other people are depending on me? Still, it was a good story and important to know that sometimes life gets into the way of our plans.


    • divoran09 May 28, 2014 at 12:09 pm #

      Thank you for your empathy. It’s great to be understood.


  2. LisaJeyDavis May 26, 2014 at 2:21 pm #

    Ha! Out of the mouths of babes! Great story!


    • divoran09 May 28, 2014 at 12:09 pm #

      Thanks. I got a kick out of it — later.


  3. James Prescott May 26, 2014 at 11:17 am #

    Great story, great principle. Thanks for sharing.


    • divoran09 May 28, 2014 at 12:10 pm #

      Thank you for your compliments, they go down welll.


  4. Bob Nailor May 26, 2014 at 11:06 am #

    Sometimes, seldom but still, sometimes, the best laid plans go astray and are even better than planned. Sometimes the wisdom seen through the eyes of youth isn’t the same as what we perceive.


    • divoran09 May 28, 2014 at 12:12 pm #

      Some of the other kids loved hiding their own eggs, so you’re right, you can never actually tell.


  5. Tara Fairfield May 26, 2014 at 10:30 am #

    Love how God teaches us with the little things!


    • divoran09 May 28, 2014 at 12:10 pm #

      You’re right — little things and little people, too,


  6. Old Things R New May 26, 2014 at 9:55 am #

    The little girl is precious and may have learned a life lesson from your story. I can just hear her as an elderly grandmother telling her little ones, “if you don’t plan well, children have to hide their own eggs” while the little ones roll their eyes and wonder how grandmother comes up with these sayings.


    • divoran09 May 28, 2014 at 12:13 pm #

      she is precious and adorable. Little bossy boots, just like me.


  7. Louise Gib son May 26, 2014 at 8:33 am #



    • divoran09 May 28, 2014 at 12:14 pm #

      Thanks for letting me know I conveyed my frustration. Thanks for your understanding.


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