Tag Archives: neighborhood

Meeting Neighbors – Walk #11

Eleven-Year-Old forgot his binder at home. The sun was shining, so I walked it to the school, saying hello to some of the neighbors along the way:

Excuse the mud. Have you a nibble or two?

 

Hey, you new?

 

Either these are alpacas or there are some strange looking horses in the neighborhood. =>

 

 

“The Lord is my shepherd; I have all that I need. He lets me rest in green meadows; he leads me beside peaceful streams. He renews my strength. He guides me along right paths, bringing honor to His name.” Psalm 23:1-3 (NLT)

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Walk #6

Stains

After shooting stained glass all over town I was able to tell a fellow blogger how it’s best shot from the dark side:

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(Click St. Joseph image for full view. Click browser “back” arrow to return.)

A few days later the girls and I went to lunch at Spoons. I soon discovered one of the best lunch spots in town is located in the stunningly beautiful Hope West Hospice:

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“May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us; establish the work of our hands for us– yes, establish the work of our hands.” Psalm 90:17 (NIV)

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Finale

Today’s walk demanded special attention. I recognized the first signs of autumn – summer’s finale:

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For everything there is a season, a time for every activity under heaven.” Ecclesiastes 3:1 (NLT)

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Walk #5

It was a great day to visit the local post office.

Outside the building a small flag moving along, barely visible above the cars parked along the curb stole my attention. I found it attached to Marjorie Lewis’ scooter. Ms Lewis shared with me a good part of her last few decades and some American History. Half an hour with her seemed like seconds but I doubt I’ll ever forget this unsung hero:

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Birthday cards to mail, I proceeded inside to find the regular gang waiting to help me:

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Not just a Postal Employee but my workout cheer leader, Linda checks my dumbbells.

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The seal of approval.

“How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony!” Psalm 133:1 (NLT)

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Walk #4

Unsung Heroes

I set out to walk and shoot some of the unique homes in the neighborhood. Instead…

City Water Work- Copy

 

As I walked I realized what people do every day helps keep the neighborhood running smoothly. They are unsung heroes.

A block away I noticed a man I see frequently. He was riding off on his bicycle as one of the Tire Store employees watched. Tire Guy was checking the bike tires were right. I asked, and sure enough, Tire Guy saw the man trying to fix his flat himself unsuccessfully and helped him. Free. Of. Charge. Another unsung hero.

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From there I found members of our local fire house meeting neighbors at the library, informing us about what they do – until an ambulance call took the paramedics away:

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Inside the library, more unsung heroes wait to make anyone’s day better, (the shot of my other buddy at the automated checkout/information desk didn’t take) 😦

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I learned our Library’s Security Officer is a retired Highway Patrolman.

Then there are the great people at the local super market that make our shopping experiences so much nicer and often more fun:

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Lastly I met local artist Nancy Lewis, who’s on a mission stirring up awareness of Endangered Places in Colorado by painting them for art shows:

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Had I been driving I would have missed so many of the people and the experiences that help to make our neighborhood great – every day.

“So let’s not get tired of doing what is good. At just the right time we will reap a harvest of blessing if we don’t give up.” Galatians 6:9 (NLT)

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Walk #3

In my Neighborhood

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Walking with my head lowered, my cap visor pulled down reflected how I felt after examining my finances. Suddenly I nearly bumped into a man standing at the edge of the sidewalk. I startled just a smidgen, but looked closely at the shabbily dressed, but immaculate looking man of indeterminable age.

He smiled.

He said nothing and I felt comfortable stopping a scant few feet from him. Looking into his smile I felt a weight lift. In heartbeats I forgot my troubles and the mood of my day changed. I asked if I could take his photo for my blog about our neighborhood. Hands in his pockets, he didn’t move but his smiled broadened. I snapped, thanked him and began walking again – the sun would be hot soon.

A few steps later I looked back to wave but didn’t see him. In my newfound peace I felt a little sad he was gone, but then I too smiled. I am blessed. As I envisioned his smile again something shiny in the grass caught my eye:

homeless memorial

“Finally, all of you should be of one mind. Sympathize with each other. Love each other as brothers and sisters. Be tenderhearted, and keep a humble attitude.” 1 Peter 3:8 (NLT)

 

Images are from my private collection and aside from reblogging or reposting the article in whole, are not to be copied without prior written permission. Thank you!

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Walk #2

Inspired by the amazing Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha’s Echoes of my Neighborhood. If you haven’t already met her, you must visit A Cooking Pot and Twistedtales for a taste of this, a sampling of that and you never know what else. You won’t be sorry. Thanks for all your masterful advice, Jacqueline! My phone will do for now. ❤

 

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Every hour my fitness device reminds me to get up and move. Typically I stretch and then power walk around a different block each lap, each hour. Depending upon the time of day these strolls are usually uneventful. My third tour this morning was an exception.

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Returning home, I found Steve, our charming next-door neighbor. He confirmed my suspicion that he’d actually popped by to chat as I barbecued the other day  – annnd to identify the dog that’s permeated our once quiet neighborhood with constant, loud barking. I’m glad to know he pays attention. I’m also comforted knowing I’m not the only one the dog annoys. I informed him the property owners the other side of our house are in the long process of moving back in to their rental property. Misery loves company.

Steve also identified the cars belonging to their property. I can now tell at a glance who’s around and who’s away – mostly. We laughed at how he learned the names of 100 young campers the week before, yet he forgets Erin and my names. He artfully worded how even from a distance he knows me on sight as he does construction work around the neighborhood. It’s nice to know he’s watching out for the two old broads neighbors.

underpass 1Most notable, he too leaves provisions for the people living under the bridge. And he directed me to other neighbors who work at local food pantries where they need volunteers. I’m in.

What a marvelously invigorating, inspiring 15 minutes!

 

“Pay attention to this, Job. Stop and consider the wonderful miracles of God!” Job 37:14 (NLT)

*Image courtesy Pixabay

All other images, property of Rapture Practice! Publications (c)2016 are not to be shared or otherwise distributed without prior written permission. Thank you!

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Walk

Today again I appreciate more and more how we are fearfully and wonderfully made. First, who knew how changing my post days to Monday and Thursday would go like this?

Today’s revelation began two nights ago – I was actually cold beneath my wool blanket and goose down throw. In case I haven’t mentioned it before I never feel cold, so in the gorgeous spring weather of the Western Slope, that was the first clue that I have been running overloaded for too long. I just checked: The temps were 46 degrees to 78 degrees here that day – around 70 degrees when I retired.

This morning confirmed my suspicion when I awoke with what I generally call hamburger throat, imagining what my insides might look like with that sore, raspy feeling.

Josey tea Carli JeanWith no fever it’s all good. I arose only slightly slower than usual and was sipping my Black Silk amaretto latte by the time Erin arose. I marvel at how, in only four weeks we’ve achieved very close to perfect sync with each other. It’s almost as though the past thirty-five years had been mere weeks.

thumb driveRight on course, by then I’d already checked my drafts for today’s post and had dismissed all of the ideas I found there. By Erin’s second cup of Black Silk Vanilla ambition, she suggested I consider her idea from a few days before, the things we miss while driving.

Before I prepared my second latte Erin invited me to walk downtown with her to City Hall to pay a bill and get some fresh air. Because my second latte was super low fat, low caffeine with evaporated cane juice, (and my body’s fighting off an infection 😉 ) I considered her suggestion longer than I usually would.

Despite having volumes of words and photos to consider, I immediately prepared to walk anyway. Walking simply seemed right.

Though I felt tired before we wrapped up the 1.6 miles, I’m glad I went. Walking alone and had I not been feeling slightly puny, I would have logged in 3 miles in that time. However I would not have met the neighbors.

Two blocks from home a Mini-Schnauzer, a Shih Tzu, and a Great Pyrenees/German shepherd pup rushed into the road, barking happily to greet us. The pup, already bigger than her mature dog companions, but clearly a baby, loped along. Their people, Guy and Barbie were right on their heels.

Without Erin I wouldn’t have stopped to chat. We wouldn’t have learned Guy and Barbie also have property just a stretch of the legs from Keira and Newlyn’s property (Erin’s mom and her late father) where we go for Sunday dinner every week. And yet, we paused a good ten minutes, met our neighbors briefly and their fur kids – well enough that 3-month-old Big Baby began walking with us as we departed. We’ll consider doing that another day.

pit bull leashHow delightful that Guy knows Keira and Newlyn’s place by the spayed Amstaf terrier that lives in the next lot on the road just before Keira’s. Though Guy doesn’t recall knowing Erin’s two brothers, everyone in town knows Nancy the pit bull, who initially seems ferocious, but locals all stop to greet her – usually with a treat. I adore the friendly, small-town atmosphere despite the wide geographical span.
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Ordinarily under other circumstances I wouldn’t have stopped to chat up our two young, co-ed neighbors taking a break from their studies either. I wouldn’t have told them they remind me of mornings on our porch back home where Roan, Opal and I would sit, wrapped in our blankets, mugs of coffee in hand to see the day in.

What’s more, the girls wouldn’t otherwise have extended an invitation to join their occasional parties any time, and they wouldn’t have welcomed us to visit them for food and grog where they both work at the local chain establishment. We wouldn’t have chatted about the advantages of the new Fitbits and the knock-offs that are out there.

GJ Law ofcI also noticed the amazing array of flora, from blooming cactus to peonies, vivid iris and the many varieties of columbine, and how they differ in full sun and from beneath the immense shade trees. Nor seemingly everywhere the vintage, refashioned architecture styles and landscaping seen on the Western Slope.

 

 

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I noticed how the many other pedestrians nodded, saying, “hi” and how one in particular paused to ask us about the shell casing we’d found in the grass a few feet in front of him. “Weird,” he said. We agreed. I wouldn’t have noticed the bird calls, especially the dove that called to us, seeming to follow us from tree top to tree top going from our block and then welcoming us back to it.

What I didn’t notice is vehicle traffic. Aside from a rare, occasional car passing (below the speed limit), the driver waving or nodding politely as they passed, there are very few cars moving through the neighborhood mid-to-late weekday mornings. The breeze and bird calls aren’t drowned out by more obnoxious sounds. Don’t tell anyone I said this, but I might have heard some dandelions groaning as they struggled for root room in the thick grass of one sunny lawn.

Then there’s the view of the Book Cliffs, Sleeping Ute, Mount Garfield, The Mesa and the National Monument towering around us. If they don’t take your breath away you need new glasses – or perhaps a check up from the neck up.

Sleep Butte  Mt Garfield

Whether I’m actually sick or simply run-hard-and-put-away-wet, I’m delighted to have experienced some of the beauty we miss when we drive ourselves to our various errands. Clearly it’s good therapy. I feel extravagantly blessed that whatever we need in our household is walking distance from our front door, even when we need a break more than anything else. The reorganization project will be waiting for us whenever we return.

God knows this deep sense of belonging to family and community is exactly what I’d hoped and prayed for. Clearly He held it all together here just for me :D.

Thanks God!

 

“Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.” Matthew 6:21 (NLT)

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What’s Next

The world is changing. The changes didn’t start on 9/11/2001 yet that was a distinctive milestone.

Yet despite the many changes, some important things are the same as when I was a child – a very long time ago. I’m talking about what makes the world go ‘round; what makes us happy.

Above all the violence, tragedy and the madness, more than ever before I see people care about people. The technological advances in my lifespan alone, the blogosphere all have presented us with more opportunities, advantages that were unfathomable as I was growing up.

We have gone global. Our family, friends, and neighbors – our community has become immense.

Honestly, from my limited perspective life occasionally seems overwhelming; health issues, ecology, economy, strife… We all have dark days when the world feels hopeless. And yet the globe continues to turn, the sun keeps rising on a brand new day.

My dear, sage friend Zoe once said it best: “Every day, you walk out your door, really look around you and help the first person you see. Sometimes all it takes is a smile, say good morning or maybe help carry out the trash…

…The possibilities are endless and it all begins with simply getting out of our heads for a moment, pause, ask the simple, forgotten question, ‘Can I lend you a hand?’ You continue on your way, but you did something.”

Even when it feels like we’re at the end of our ropes, we can get radical and possibly change the course of a day, a life – the world. We start by simply responding to the question, What’s Next? What can I do to help, right where I am right now? I suggest we do the simplest next right thing.

 

“I have told you all this so that you may have peace in me. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” Jesus, The Bible (NLT), John 16:33

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