Since Irene, the mood around here has shifted to a kinder direction--not that Kindness wasn't ever present, but that some of it was sleeping for a time. I think that is why God doesn't step in to save us every time awful things happen. The strength and the beauty of the human soul always reaches to tragedy's surface.
A couple of weekends ago, we helped a family that we know whose home was flooded in Hartford, Vermont. She told me that she watched the banks of the White River double, then triple in size as her kids were in the tub for their evening baths. The town couldn't have been better to respond to the flood warnings--police knocking on her door to evacuate, readying the local high school for evacuees, sending people to her home the day after the flooding to check on her well being. When Boy was shoveling out mud from their garage and basement, there was a truck delivering paper bag lunches.
Gratefully taking a brown bag, he asked, "Do you live around here?"
"No, we live across the river. We just wanted to help."
There was a note tucked inside that read,
"With loving thoughts and prayers from your neighbors in the Upper Valley."
I love that. Normal people doing great things.
But life has to move on, people have to go back to their jobs, and a mom like me has to continue running the show solo at home. While I can't fully do what I want to do to help, I know that when I go to my grocery store to buy dairy items named Cabot, forking out the extra cash for pure Vermont maple syrup, and buying local produce at Stern's or at the farm down the road can be offering something like the widow's mite.
|damage hanging by a thread to a home in Woodstock, VT|
|I have now photographed the other side of the Quechee Bridge...much worse than a hole, as you can see.|
|The mud shows how high the water came up the Quechee Gorge|