Communities come together in times of need and I have seen our community grow immensely in a short period, or maybe more accurately my appreciation of our community grew even more. This past week has been challenging for many and many are likely still facing challenges in the days to come. Through these challenges I have witnessed some amazing scenes. The sights would restore even the most down trodden view on humanity.
I want to share with you a couple of the highlights I saw while trying to do my part. I want to brag about the community we all call home and provide reasons why we should all be proud.
The first scene was a mother wading through knee high water to get her three kids off the school bus. She then carried them, one by one, to dry ground. Traffic waited, in water, while she made the three trips. The maternal care she showed and the relief she demonstrated as she placed the last child on dry ground moved me and allowed me to push harder through my day.
Firemen are a special breed and we have some of the best volunteer firefighters around right here in our community. In a time of high stress and continual action, a couple of them calmly aided seniors onto a bus as they evacuated the Lions Villa. Each fireman was able to smile and infuse a sense of humor to reduce the stress in the entire situation. As the bus stopped to drop off a couple of the seniors on board, the firemen piggybacked them to dry ground and again humor made the situation more bearable. I was again left feeling blessed in the midst of chaos.
With homes fully surrounded by water, I could see neighbors gathered on small pieces of dry land, talking and even laughing with one another. The sound of running pumps and generators prevented me from hearing the laughter but their facial expressions indicated that it was forced simply to help them keep their sanity. They were leaning on each other as they sat scanning the floating debris and tangled pipes amongst their subdivision. Their ability to face such a tough situation with a brave face made me realize how small some of my day to day problems really are.
Kids always seem to have a positive attitude and as our future that is a great thing. As parents struggled with trying to minimize the damage to their homes, I watched kids playing obliviously to the ramifications of what was going on around them. The link between youth and innocence was driven home as the kids splashed in a puddle at the end of his driveway.
Maybe the biggest testament to how strong our community truly is was how often I saw friends helping friends. On a normal day, a household would sit lifeless as the home owners went quietly about their day. Over this week this same home has 4 or more people milling about trying to put it back together. Some of the people are family members while others are neighbors who are slightly better off. This happened instantly and likely without even a call.