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  • Daniel Francis

Good Neighbors

In our neighborhood, there are magnificent trees: oak, cypress, pine, elm, palm, maple among many others. You can't miss the sycamores, however: their plate-sized leaves float and fall everywhere. I have to confess the glee I get when channeling my inner child and tromping through the piles that gather spontaneously in the curb- think of the sound of crushing a bag of potato chips and you're a few decibels short.


Three years ago Senator Paul Rand's ribs were broken when he had a fight with his neighbor over grass clippings and leaves. This reminds me of Robert Frost's poem with the line "Good fences make good neighbors." [As an aside, in the poem Frost didn't agree and wanted to remove the stone wall that separated their lands.]


Back to sycamore leaves... to see them blown all down the block makes me wonder how neighbors deal with this yearly arboreal jetsam. Do they, like I, love the sight of this stately tree enough to endure the interloping debris... or do they pray for borer beetles to bring the sycamore down after enough eating?


Just before the election, I heard that a supporter of X found out his neighbor's sign (for Y) had been stolen. Despite the fact that they disagreed politically, he went out and purchased a replacement sign for Y- not his own candidate.


All of this to ask: what do we do with the winds (ill or chill) that blow our way? What if that which disturbs or challenges us can actually make us stronger?


I'm going to be talking about some of this and much more on next Wednesday's zoominar (webinar via Zoom). If you've not yet registered, you can click on this link: Grateful Living Even (especially) in Tough Times. See you then!


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