Compassion and Respect

Dear Friends,

A somber morning greeted me. I stood on my terrace and let the cool
morning air gently bring me to full wakefulness. The serenity of the
almost invisible green rolling hills grounded me. I could feel my heart
fill with gratitude to be alive, even during this time of uncertainty in
our world. At least in that moment, everything in my world is good.
Go out early today and breathe in Nature’s wonderful gifts.

I had a busy week which ended as quickly as it began. The days seem
shorter so I try to get as much out of them as I can. The problem with
that system is that I often forget to take in the beauty of a new blossom
or the joy of sitting long enough to appreciate the colors of the sunset.
My “to do” list gets longer but I try not to focus on trying to do every
item, especially menial chores that can wait another day (or week!).

Last week I visited the main branch of the INS (National Insurance
Institute) in Barrio Aranjuez in San José. Although my errand was not
exciting, I really enjoyed being in the neighborhood because it gave
me an opportunity to revisit the colonial architecture of charming,
restored small hotels as I made my way from the parking lot to the
offices. I observed tourists with their guide books and wished I had
time to stop and ask their impressions of our “cosmopolitan” city.

When I was in the INS office, I was impressed by the efficiency of the
personnel. I was also witness to the patience and compassion shown by
a son towards his frail and elderly mother who was probably not more
than 15 years his senior. They were walking slowly ahead of me in the
building and he kindly escorted her out of the way so I could reach the
stairs as they took small steps towards the ramp.

I was so moved by this act that when I reached my destination, I turned
so I could see their progress. They had not gotten very far but the son
was still holding his mom’s hand and talking to her softly. I could see
her nodding and smiling, and I got the sense that mutual respect was
part of their bond. Two complete strangers made my day!

Have a wonderful day celebrating life and a great week, Marietta

Picture my own

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