Wednesday, August 03, 2011

People Talking!

The other night, for no apparent reason, our power went out. There was no storm, no wind. We still don't know what was the reason.

My husband Mike and I started to take the dog out for a walk. Our neighbor, who is a bus driver, came home just as we were leaving. He told us that all the lights on this side of town were out. Even told us the intersection where the outage began.

We continued on our walk. Every neighbor we passed made eye contact and then started to talk. "Do you have power?" And then the conversation would continue, each person sharing what information they had.

We went to Meijer to buy some dry ice for the freezer. Sure enough, there were a few people approaching the ice boxes. We all looked at each other questioningly. Yup. Each one had no power. As Mike and another man pulled out bagged blocks of dry ice someone noticed that the price was per pound....and the bag felt a lot heavier than a pound. As we went through the you-scan line Mike turned around and confirmed for the other man. "Yup. It's fifteen dollars." The man smiled and nodded. Just as he had thought.

I said to Mike, "People are talking to each other." It was so pleasant. There was a feeling of camaraderie. We were all in this together. We were verbally linking arms. Neighbors talking to neighbors. Customers talking to customers. This is valuable. This is good. Talking to those we don't know well, or maybe even don't know at all, is a way of expressing Christian charity. It's a little thing perhaps. A smile. A kind word. It's a way of providing just a little bit of heart warmth to another. A way of recognizing Jesus in another.

With pillar candles left over from Anne's wedding lit in all the rooms on the main floor, the power came back on at about 11:00 PM. It was a relief. And it was a blessing to have had the gears of normal life shifted just a little bit.


Suzanne said...

I love this..I miss the days when the neighbor lady would just come by, rap on the open screen door and proceed to enter after sayin.."Anybody home? What ya'll doin?" Someone was always outside doing something...we have a couple of neighbors who always wave as one drives your blog post girl! How are you? :) I was with Karen this weekend...was blessed to be a godmother again to another one of her grandboys! So blessed am I that way! :) We are thinking of coming up to MI to camp with them when the weather cools ...she said...I sure hope to see you again soon!

Anonymous said...

Mom! All you need to do is come to the south and people cannot STOP talking to eachother!!!! I was just sitting in a auto shop getting a new car battery and the people in the waiting room were all talking like we were best friends. Kind weird for us northerners ; )


Patti Anne said...

I ove this post, Rose. And I love Anne's response. There is something out of kilter in our society in that we have stopped being neighborly. But sometimes, when the out of the ordinary happens, like a power outage, or a blizzard, people have a need to communicate.

Rosemary Bogdan said...

Suzanne, me too! Let me know!
Anne, I think it's so nice that people in the south are like that!
Patti- There is such a difference in the south! People really do talk!