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Sunday, October 16, 2011

community

If you go to the same places every day, you begin to meet the same people. You see them, they see you, you exchange hellos. They already know one of your habits. If you carry knitting or a notebook, they learn more. Perhaps one of them does the same work. They see you working, they ask you. Perhaps you buy 2 litres of honey from one of them. You overpay. Suddenly, there are small gifts. 20 pounds of apples.

Perhaps one of them is a bee keeper, and one is a writer. Another asks you for a sweater pattern. The writer lends you a book. Suddenly, at the usual intersections, friends pass you three different ways. Startled, you whip your head around. When the writer has a bicycle accident, you buy her a Frank McCourt audio book. You get her address when her mother waltzes into the cafe like a plot device. When you go to deliver the present, you find the writer lives only a block away, which is astonishing. Furthermore astonishing, you know the man who saw her on the road and took her to the hospital. Even there, the nurse was familiar with the patch of broken sidewalk that sent Jocelyn flying. Other cyclists know.

3 comments:

  1. I had this same revelation last year. Working at the cafe showed me what it's like to be a part of a community. And not in the same way that you become friends with classmates. I have often reflected upon our group of friends, and how we're all so different but in so many ways the same. And the ways in which we come together, and meet new people, and contribute something to each others' lives.

    Once, Chuck and Erika and I were walking from my house to Mel's apartment to meet her (she lived half a block from where I was living). On the way, we ran into Mark, and as we stood on the corner talking to him, JB drove by and waved out the window of his van. It was kind of surreal, and we all commented on it as we stood there on the street in Garneau.

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  2. the reason I wish I worked at Garneau exclusively. It is truly makes me feel a sense of community that I haven't run into all that often. That being said each community is inherently unique.

    in our world community is something to treasure.

    I had a long conversation with Jocelyn the other day. She is an amazing person, such a kind person.

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