Sunday, June 16, 2013

Changing times

In a neighborhood as small and closely knit as ours is, it makes a big difference when people move away -- and we've lost two couples who mean a great deal to us this month. The first, and closest -- the owners of these beautiful poppies -- are "only renters," but they've lived here longer than we have and will be sorely missed.

When you're building a community, it's never about who owns the property; it's about who's around, and how they interact with others. We've never met the owner of this couple's house, but we've shared several dinners with his wonderful tenants, watched their cat, they've watched our dog; we've watched each other's kids grow up -- that's the stuff of community.

The other couple lived at the farthest end of the sandspit: his family had owned that property for years and they were founding members of the community -- she still leads the singing that follows the annual Fourth of July parade in our little neighborhood (yes, we have our own parade!). They're only moving closer into town, but still -- it feels a bit as if we've lost an anchor. Theirs will be a difficult act to follow...

But change is always an inevitable part of life: the question is only how we adapt. Neighbors, like these poppies, may go away, but new ones always come to replace them. They may be more or less visible in the life of the community, in good or bad ways, but always there is something new to be learned or gained.  It's like a variation on that wonderful quote from Gilead I shared last week: With change there are always new opportunities -- You don't have to bring a thing to it except a little willingness to see...

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