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Monday, January 21, 2013

Monday Musings.

Why is it that, when there is the glorious prospect of a three-day weekend and all that time off to look forward to, I end up cramming way too much into it and WHAM, it's almost over?  It's that pesky weekend/vacation/holiday time warp - where time morphs into a sprinter and is gone before you know it.  Damn.

Most of my musings of late have had to do with a sort of nostalgic view of community.  I have been talking to my parents and neighbors, both elderly, who have imbued me with their own sense of longing for what was.  Back when there wasn't a subsidy for everything, communities pulled together and helped each other out.  People were not spread so far apart and neighbors were aware of what their neighbors were going through.  It is still true that people who have the least, tend to be the ones who step up first to help.  I've noticed a lot of that sense of community in the blogosphere.  It often takes the shape of prayers, healing thoughts, or what have you, but it also takes on a physical presence as well - an unexpected package in the mail containing a small, handmade gift to cheer the recipient - neither the giver or the receiver ever having actually met.  It's quite a phenomenon.

Not surprisingly, I have always been rebelling.  I was a contrary kid and that didn't change much through my 20s, 30s and well into my 40s.  I still chafe at conformity, but I've learned to pick my battles instead of battling everything.  I rebelled against the war.  I learned a lesson many years ago, the summer between my junior and senior years in high school, when my father signed me up to accompany a busload of city kids from a church group who were going out to the Dakotas to help 'save' the Indians. Long story short, it was the other way around. The Indians saved me. They opened my eyes and showed me what true dignity and compassion was all about.


I still have some very passionate feelings and beliefs that I will defend to the death.  While these days I don't grab a sign and go march in a protest, I do what I can within my daily living to contribute to the cause.  For instance, I will not buy anything from India.  I will not support a country that brutalizes its women.  I try to limit what I buy from China.  I try to recycle and reuse everything I can.  It may be delusion, but I feel that even small acts can make a difference.  Earth Day still means something to me.   I also feel that it is important to be involved in the well-being of your community.  I contribute monthly to our food pantry - which also provides monetary assistance to families for heating oil and other necessities.  There is almost no tax base in this community - no job opportunities, the education level is not great, we are in the middle of Booneyville, so people with limited means are almost trapped here. 

I am hopeful that civility will make a comeback - maybe it will become as retro as tie-dye and distressed denim.  But, when it comes back in style, I hope it's back to stay.

8 comments:

  1. I know many folks don't agree with me, but I feel the very best/most effective thing we as individuals can do is to "do good" in our own personal lives . . . as you do, Bloggy Friend. Kind of akin to the old adage, "Charity begins at home." Call it, "Being the best person you can be begins at home." Stepping out into the world and waging war is a useless tragedy. Goodness (used in an all-encompassing way) begins with our own self, one person, living our own life in the best way we can. Not spreading negativity in the name of changing and/or fixing anyone else. Hang on to those positive vibrations and refuse to spread any negative ones.

    I think I just tried to repeat what you said so much more eloquently, didn't I? Okay, I'm pushing the soap box back under the bed now.

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    1. Mama Pea - You keep that soap box handy! Yes, I agree that it's important to lead by example. I guess that is why I hold so many of our politicians in contempt! Don't get me started...

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  2. It is indeed a day for reflection, isn't it. We all need to do our small part to make our world a better place, cleaner and safer than we found it. Thanks for the reminder.

    Sue

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  3. I've found a community of blog friends since I started blogging too. It's nice to get that from time to time and read and share what is going on with people I will probably never meet in life. It's an adventure and I've enjoyed it thus far!

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  4. I'm in the same boat- try to leave the earth a better place. I work with very high poverty kids and it just kills you seeing what they go thru. I try to affirm them, listen to them and encourage them. I hope it sinks in. "Bloom where you're planted" as the old saying goes...

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  5. And "saving the Indians", that's funny. Most are a lot more devout and spiritual than the rest of us, IMO...

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  6. I agree with your post completely and also Mama Pea said it well, responsibility starts at home. "Changing the world" is a tall order, but if everyone did what they could for their own family the world change would happen without any protests needed :)

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  7. Another great Musing post Susan! If everyone would look out for their own family and community, we wouldn't need all the subsidies and social programs that are bankrupting our country. You are a good person my dear and I'm glad to "know" you! :)
    My favorite ring has an inscription that reads "Let Your Life Speak."

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