Sixty miles west of Boston, Massachusetts there is the small New England town of Sturbridge. Located at the junction of I-90 (The Mass Pike), and I-84 it has become known as the "Crossroads of New England". The town was first settled over 300 years ago, and like other small New England towns it has grown just enough over the years to be in a difficult place today. How do we embrace the future without forgetting how we got to our present? How do we attract the right kind of growth, and maintain who we are? And, what about our culture out here in Central Massachusetts?
These pages will cause one to think about how to protect what we have, our future direction, and how to move on in the very best way.
Those thoughts, and other ramblings, will hopefully inspire more thought, conversation, action, and occasionally a smile...
...seems to be working so far
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
"Snatch The Marble From My Hand, Grasshopper"
Brilliant. I wasted my time reading this you are asking yourself. No, you didn't. Sometimes the most obvious can be broken down into the simplest of forms. Take for instance building a stone wall. One stone just doesn't cut it, but if you get a lot of them, pile them on top of each other in a line, and about so high, you get a wall. Depending on ones skill it can be a good looking, functional wall, or just ruble in line. Either way, it is still a wall, and no longer just a stone.
I don't mean to sound like the screen writer for "Karate Kid", but this is a basic premise of most everything we do. Now, take the above analogy a step further. If we each did something small, doesn't matter how small, for a common goal, then the sum of all those little steps would result in moving closer to that goal, and eventually obtaining it.
I know. A bit too heavy for your morning coffee, but bare with me.
This week I took one of those little steps. Actually, a baby step. I made a decision to undertake a simple project for the betterment of our town. I figure I can't just sit back, and let my fingers fly around the keyboard, and call it a day. I need to be proactive. I need to be an example of what one can do. This is a switch since most of my life I have been the poster child for just what not to do.
It is a very small step, but this is the way one learns, and eventually, I'll pick up speed. It won't take me away from other things in my life, it won't compromise my work, or home life. So, it was pretty much a no brainer to stand up, wobble a bit, and then take that step.
Now, how does this relate to you? Well, it may or may not, depending on where your head is at at the moment, but if your head is open, then it may serve as an example of what a little effort, a little time can do for a greater good. Sounds Woodstockian, or Earth Day-ish, I know, but it is a truth that has been around for a few Milena.
This is how it works: I see others giving of themselves to a cause, and they are happy, and nothing bad has happened to them as a result of their spending that extra energy. So, after a bit, I feel I can something , too. Someone else sees that I haven't exploded because of my actions, and they feel they can do a little something, too. And, so on, and so on.
Little marbles filling the bag.
Little things like volunteering at the library to read to the kids on a regular basis. Volunteering at the Senior Center, or in the class room, donating flowers for the flower pots that decorate our towns roads during the spring and summer, helping to clean up the Common after an event, assisting a neighbor paint their porch, dropping off a case of Huggies, or formula to the new mom down the road. These are all small steps, but together they move us toward a common goal: a happier existence, and a better place to call home.
OK, I'll step down from my pulpit. I don't have to preach to the choir. There are many here in town that give both their time and money to a variety of causes, I just want to acknowledge them, for they inspired me, and hopefully, I will inspire others.
Today, I am hoping that some of you out there will take that little step. I know we can do it. I know we can make our home town a better place without having to rely on board meetings, votes, and agendas to set the pace.
Face it, most politicians have lost their marbles, and we still have ours. It's time to start filling the bag.