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Say You Want Rocky Road ... It's Only Polite

Ask for Rocky Road if you want Rocky Road
Not every summer, but almost every summer we would make the long drive from Minnesota, just south of the Twin Cities to Northern Vermont. The Northeast Kingdom was a wild and spookily rural place just on the Canadian border. It was always an event and my father's family would come down from Southern Quebec to visit.

Aunt Evenlyn, my very sweet second Aunt, left the car to pick up two pints of ice cream for dessert. I remember sitting in the car squashed between grownups. Sitting in the middle of the backseat with my feet on the bump she leaned in through the car window and asked for suggestions from the carload of visiting relatives.

After she left, I sighed, "Oh I sure hope she gets Rocky Road." My Dad, very kindly and with sincere appreciation thanked me for not saying anything. I know that he was pleased because I was showing self control and discipline. I was being polite.

Aunt Evelyn came back from the store. I was in luck. She returned with Rocky Road. We giggled at my good fortune and told her that was the flavor I was hoping she would get.

But she asked! 

She asked what we wanted. Why wasn't answering her question okay?

I think about that now. When I ask someone what they want I really want to know. I am trying to find out what they really do want and I don't want politeness I want their answer.