A Small Town Story







Dear Friends,

It has been a very hectic week yet I felt rested and full of joy to wake up
this morning to the subtle sounds and smells of nature outside my window.
A fine drizzle brushed my shoulders as I stepped onto the terrace. In the
distance I could make out the music and sermon from the church nearby. I
wonder if the congregation is gathering in person now that restrictions are
entering a different phase. Today is World Communion Sunday, a day to
celebrate the humanity that unites us, something we need more than ever.

October is also Senior Citizens Month. I was reminded just yesterday in an
email from AARP that I have now reached this important milestone. I admit
it is a little disconcerting sometimes because I feel decades younger than my
birth certificate tells me I am! I remind myself that age is just a number and
that my thinking process about aging will determine how I navigate this new
and exciting phase of my existence. We are fortunate. We are living at a time
when there are limitless opportunities for personal development at any age.

People, conditions and circumstances do a lot to influence our outlook. It is
often difficult to remember that we are in charge of our thoughts. We are in
the midst of world situations that we have not seen before. While we cannot
keep ourselves completely unaware of current events, the wisest thing we can
do is limit our exposure to negative outside stimuli (media!) that keep us in
a loop of reaction rather than a flow of deep reflection. We can change our
thoughts once we realize we are allowing them to be a problem in our day.

My husband and I hired a taxi on Thursday to go to an appointment in our
neighboring town of Grecia. Having someone else do the driving is a nice
change. The driver went at an unhurried pace and I appreciated being able
to see Nature from another angle. Our conversation (observing all Covid-19
protocols) touched upon many aspects of small-town life. He recalled the
hospitality and solidarity he feels were present to a greater degree when he
was younger. My experience in the last 20 years in Atenas contradicts this.
The deeply human-centered approach in these challenging times enriches
my life and makes me proud to call this small town my home.

Have a wonderful day and a safe, amazing week, Marietta

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