It came to me the other day while out and about walking around this small town. It reminds me so much of what it used to be like growing up as young boy. Like traveling back in time to the 60’s. A simpler less complicated time, when family and community were very
important and existed as one. People fill the streets from sun up to sun set with music resonating from homes and shops. A community willing to help each other as extended families. Word is that there is no such thing as yard sales as you give away your unwanted things to those that need. The climate enables living outside and enjoying all the sun and warmth. There is no winter hibernation or isolation so many Canadians know too well. Selling door to door is welcomed and expected. Utilities bills are hand delivered and not an invasion of privacy like we feel so much when someone is knocking on our front door thinking who’s bothering me now? Though I’d be more happy buying fresh oranges or Tamale’s any day over someone trying to sell me a hot water tank! There was a children’s celebration in the town square the other night. I never saw so many children in such a small space. The joy and excitement frozen on their faces was priceless. Bringing back special memories of the days when my children were young. The night was full of fun, food and laughter. Families live in the parks entertaining themselves. BBQ picnics start early on a Saturday mornings and last all day. There are many parks scattered over such a small town and usually something good is happening. Signs are everywhere reminding children what is important. I especially like this one sign at a waterfront park. The 4 Way Test Of Things We Say, Think or Do 1. Is It The Truth? 2. Is It Fair To All Concerned? 3. Does It Build Good Will and Better Friendship? 4. Will It Be Beneficial To All Concern? Messages everywhere reminding them that being a good person is important. Don’t get me wrong there is crime here as poverty breeds desperation. Most houses have walls and fences around them with barking dogs for alarm systems. Burglary and robbery are common but done by such a minority of the population. Families are close and large. Three four five kids are the norm! Marriage and family begins at an early age. To many young women with children themselves but it’s their way. Cola and candy are treats not staples, ok Fanta might be a staple. Old school rules here, stereo’s receivers from the 70’s, twenty year old Toyota’s and Honda’s held together by any means. Bicycles are a way of life and more are needed as they are not high in the family budget each month. Seeing Mom’s with their young children riding on the handlebars of motorcycles. Cars overloaded with children riding on the drivers lap. No such thing as seatbelts or car seats. Pick ups with old car seats in the back over loaded with a group of people. It’s a different world.
Experiencing the Christmas Eve parade where I think the whole town showed up was an awesome time and my camera decided to died at that point. The local media celebrates life, accomplishments and the community not the outside world which bombards us with fear based news that we are so accustomed to. Few people I asked knew about “The End of the World myth” or “the awful tragedy at Sandy Hook”. We just didn’t hear about it till weeks later. Maybe our children don’t need to know about every disaster happening in the world? Able to just be happy being a kid in their own home, town and community. Schools don’t have metal detectors greeting children in the morning but there is an armed guard outside every bank. I’ve walked by a few local schools in the morning and the singing and laughter is priceless. The sound of joy. I’m not saying it doesn’t exist in our communities it’s just what I’m experiencing here being in such a small place. The pace of life is slow, patience is a given not a virtue. Road rage doesn’t exist even though there is no structure or sense to driving here. My time here so far has been quite an experience. It has open my mind to things I have forgotten or what really is important. Things that get lost in the rat race of life. Nice to slow down and really smell the roses. Frozen in time in the 1960’s.