On the last Sunday of June, a windy and warm Arizona morning that blew the safari hat off my head, another 3,857 Arizonans were likely blown away too–metaphorically at least–when they learned they had tested positive for COVID-19.
I’m not making light of this health crisis and a horrible situation. I’m just tired of the burgeoning numbers, those who still question the need for masks, and the lack of leadership in the White House and the Grand Canyon State. At the moment, only Florida and Texas (two other hot spots) are outpacing us in senseless behavior, cavalier attitude and sheer stupidity.
As I consider our painful pandemic plight as a state and a nation, I’m doing my best to live above the fray. To focus on the little things in life that give us hope, especially in these dark hours.
Like the neighbor who waved to me this morning as I watered the flowers on the back patio of our condo complex. She drove up, paused to lean out her window, smiled and said, “Thank you for beautifying our place.”
I needed that boost from an unexpected source. Her act of spontaneous gratitude and kindness included no monetary reward. It was simply the gesture that mattered. And the knowledge that I was making a small difference in the eyes of one of my neighbors … an older woman I don’t know by name but pass occasionally in the laundry room.
A few hours later, Tom and I approached a sign on our morning walk as we rounded the lake at Vista del Camino Park. A nine-or-ten-year-old girl (with her dad, brother and the rest of her family) was selling fresh lemonade at a makeshift stand.
We didn’t need the lemonade. We already had water bottles in hand to stay hydrated. But my immediate impulse was to encourage her entrepreneurial nature anyway. From behind my mask, I handed her two dollars and admired her hard work on a hot day … hoping I could bolster her spirit just as my neighbor had done for me.
Two simple acts. What do they mean? COVID-19 or not, we’re all in this world together. Whether we like it or not, we affect and influence each other. We and many of our friends and acquaintances–or total strangers in the next zip code west–are struggling to get by emotionally if not physically.
We all need encouragement to survive this period. Fresh lemonade to keep the faith. Positive vibes for those fighting for their lives in hospitals and homes. Smiles … from behind masks at safe distances … to remind ourselves that this dark period will end one day.
For our sake, I hope it’s sooner rather than later.
8 thoughts on “Fresh Lemonade”
What a nice, feel-good story! Thank you for posting it. Mark!
Thank you, Tom!
Dear Mark, watching the virus flames fan in the SW, I think of you and your stories and was glad to read your post, that you are well and cultivating the humane in a barbaric time. Take good care, be well
Thank you, Kim. We’re managing here okay. As trite as it sounds, taking each day as it comes and staying as safe as we can. Thank you for your concern!
Your state is freaking me out. In my (super-conservative) town, people wear masks. I’m not sure why that is. I was upstate today and LOTS of people went without masks. I simply can’t understand it. We will be deeply immersed in Covid-19 until everyone gets on board.
What a freak show. We’re living in the age of ignorance.
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We do have to look for the positives in this trying time. You sure help with that.
On Sun, Jun 28, 2020 at 2:12 PM Mark Johnson Stories wrote:
> Mark Johnson posted: ” On the last Sunday of June, a windy and warm > Arizona morning that blew the safari hat off my head, another 3,857 > Arizonans were likely blown away too–metaphorically at least–when they > learned they had tested positive for COVID-19. I’m not making ligh” >
Thank you, Carol. I’m trying to stay positive. It’s challenging.