June 19, 2009

Lessons Learned

Today was a very frightening experience for my sister in law Dorothy who still lives in New Jersey in the area's of where we all grew up. She had to stop at Lowes today and run inside for 3 items which, she did.. After making her purchases she entered the parking lot like, a lot of do after having been shopping, looking to see where she parked her car.. In this case, she was looking for my brothers 1997 Ford F 150 truck she had taken with her.. My brother loves his truck even if it is 12 years old so she took the time to park it with care away from the other cars so it wouldn't get hit.

Finally, she spotted the truck but noticed, the light was on. She thought to herself, "why is the light in my truck on?, I know I closed the door" A second later she saw someone was in it and was backing it out of the space she parked it in. It was being stolen right before her eyes!..Now she starts to scream at the top of her lungs in a crowded parking lot full of people, "Someone is stealing my truck, that guy is stealing my truck!".. Do you know, not ONE person stopped to help her.. They all looked at HER like she was crazy.. Finally, one man did come over but it was too late. .The truck was out of the parking lot.. She called 911 immediately and they were not very helpful at all and it took the local police 30 MINUTES to arrive at Lowes to take her statement...by that time, the thieves and the truck were long gone. You have to understand, we live in a city area and the traffic at this time of day, well any time of day is heavy. Had the police responded quicker they probably could have caught the thugs who stole the truck right there.

After speaking with her this afternoon I learned a lesson from this...My sister in law, besides being angry which, she has every right to be is also afraid now and I don't blame her. I would be too..but, through this I was able to realize something.

Since moving to the south 7 years ago this year, I have pretty much put it down in most ways.. I had decided to be unhappy here because it "wasn't like home" also, the health care here where I live is horrible. That is one thing that is the absolute truth. It is terrible and the summers last to long for me but, having said that there is one thing I can tell you for sure..

Many people who don't live in the south think that the majority of the people who do live in the south are 'trailer trash' have no teeth, are welfare theives, and the list of insults go on and on.. And please don't argue with me on this because since moving here I've heard them all from those who don't live here and I can tell you, there are some people here who are trash just like anywhere else. There are lots of people who DO live in trailer but you must realize that trailers here in the south are nothing like trailers in the north. The trailers here look like stick built homes. If you didn't see the white skirting on the bottom you wouldn't even know it was a trailer. These kinds of homes which are all over the place in nice communities make it possible for people to own their own homes and can you tell me? What is wrong with that? Yes, there are people here who are missing teeth and may not dress 'to impres" why? Because they don't' have the money. They can't afford health care for themselves or their children. They can not afford to shop at the mall or outlet stores so they shop at the salvation Army stores and the Good Will stores.. Etc..

For all the things that a lot of people down here don't have I can tell you one thing they have in abundance.. Compassion for their fellow man.. When others are in need if they know you or not they give whatever they have. If all they have is the shirt on their back, they will offer it.. If you lose you home to fire or flood, people here, perfect strangers will open their home to you for as long you need it, cloth you and feed you until you're on your feet.. I have seen it many many time so I know it to be true. And I can tell you with ABSOLUTE sureness, if anyone was standing in the middle of a crowded parking lot and there was a woman screaming that her truck was being stolen like, my sister in law today did in NJ, the people here would have responded right away.. Some would have even gone after the thieves. Don't believe it? Come live here for a while.. You'll see it for yourself..

So for all the things here that are not good, and all the thing I don't like the one thing I admire about most of the people in the south is there compassion for each other. The next time you want to degrade or insult people from the south I would hope you will refer back to my post and understand that yes it is VERY different once you get below the Mason Dixon line but it's not all bad..

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~Robyn~ XO