August 27 – We all live our lives with those around us who help to keep us happy and determined to do what we can to help others who may be having problems. We also rejoice with those who make the best of what they have and come out on top. As I sit here in front of the computer thinking about all of this, I feel that Dale and I are blessed abundantly by the friends and acquaintances who mean so much to us. Some of them will read this blog because they have signed on to do that! Of course, I would never have room enough in one blog entry to mention more than a few.
Richard the postmaster, will be first on this list in this particular post, as he and his workers at the post office have become an important part of our lives through the years. Since Richard spends much of his time working in his office or way back in the building, I didn’t even know who he was when years ago I was making up a colorful booklet for one of the special kids at the school to have for her own.
The post office was one of the places on my list, a place where I could take a photo of the one in charge and write up a little story the girl would be able to read. I can see that booklet yet, with Kim listed as the postmaster, Kim with that big smile she still shows to everyone. Talk about embarrassed, when one day she explained to me that she really was not the head honcho, but Richard filled that position well! I can chuckle over that story now, but not then. I hope I apologized to the real postmaster!
So back to Richard. I think he is friends with everyone and as helpful as can be. Knowing that I am a stamp collector, he always alerts me to the new issues as they come out. Sometimes he asks, “Do you have this one yet? I know it’s the kind you like!” Other times, he will pull up a full page of some dedicated to rock stars or something else that he knows I don’t want and jokingly might say, “Oh, here’s something very special, just for you!” I can tell by the twinkle in his eyes and the half-smile on his face that he knows he’s caught me again!
Dale and I both enjoy talking with him because he is always so upbeat even when problems arise. “Oh, we’ll get over it,” he announces. “Things are looking up!” Yes, our friend is a good example to the rest of us as he appreciates the blessings in his life and family and moves on with determination to do what he can to make this world a better place for his having been here.
Then there’s Bobbie, the leading lady of the Thrift Store, where proceeds from the sales go to make life brighter for those in need. Never have we seen Bobbie without a smile on her face. If I told her that, she would say something like, “Oh, but you don’t always see me,” or “There are times!”
Whenever we open the door, we see her behind the counter working through various items that people have just brought in to sell. She is so adept at checking these donated items to make sure they are without a flaw before she puts them on a shelf or display table. In between all of this, she goes through the items that customers have picked out to buy.
Dale and I still marvel at how quickly she goes through the piles of merchandise, counting and figuring in her head, and coming up with the proper amount. Just for fun, way back when, we laid our purchases out at home and figured out the cost. She was right on the button! Once in awhile since then, we have checked. Not a dime off! Now Bobbie was a teacher, but I don’t think she taught math.! (although she certainly could have!)
Without her smile and sparkling eyes, it would be hard for me to recognize our friend. She is so kind and helpful, willing to explain prices and suggesting some good bargains on items she knows we always look for. Mostly books! Dale searches the book shelves every time we go to the store, sometimes finding two or three, sometimes a dozen. I immediately move to the kids’ books section as I like to find books for little kids to enjoy. Reading was so much a part of the Fairchild home as our kids were growing up, and now we keep up the habit. Funny thing. Sometimes Dale has brought home books he bought at the Thrift Store, only to find as he sat down to read, that he had donated them in the first place! Now he makes a big X on the first page to remind him not to purchase that particular book for a second time!
Another special lady, Susan, spends most of her time in a large back room sorting through big bags and boxes of donated materials of all kinds. Sometimes, as she comes to greet us, she will have in her hands a colorful tin and a beanie baby or two. Knowing that I like to collect items like this, she always saves them as they come in. I don’t know how she manages, but she remembers the books we might like to buy, and sometimes goes directly to the one on the shelf that she has just read and enjoyed. She gives us a book report right on the spot!
These two ladies make our weekly trip to town very special. Even if we didn’t buy anything at all (how could that be!) it would be worth the time just to enjoy being with them again.
As I think of these three friends, I am reminded of one of my favorite admonitions: “It should be our aim to bring all the pleasantness possible into our lives, and to do all the kindness possible to those around us. Kind words are never lost. Sow the seeds of kindness, of love, and of tenderness, and they will blossom and bear fruit.” – CHRIS