I began writing Glimpses of Sisters when an out of town friend emailed and asked me, “So, how are things in Mayberry?” She was treated to the long answer. Today during this time fraught with angst, I want to write about optimism, which is sometimes difficult to foster, even during “normal” times.

I have a “Business For Sale” sign planted in front of a business that is closed by executive order 20-12. I find that somewhat amusing and maybe a great sign of optimism — or that I am too busy painting my kitchen and doing yard work to take it down.

The other day I witnessed five tiny ants on a butcher block table attempting to haul away a chunk of cornbread 10 times their size. They kept dropping it, or, one of the ants did. I imagined the ant conversation, “Jeez, Herb, can’t you hold up your end for crying out loud!” Herb says, “Sorry Al, I hurt one of my legs and Heckle and Jekyll over there are pretty wimpy too!” I allowed the ants to carry on because I have read too many great articles by Jim Anderson to kill anything.

Everything pretty much survives around here.

A couple of weeks ago, in a store parking lot, I witnessed another sign of optimism. A customer pushing out a cart out with three packages of toilet paper aboard was stopped by another customer walking into the store. As I watched from a distance the body language needed no conversation. Head shaking, shoulder shrugging, open hands, led me to understand what was being said. The customer with the three packages of T.P. reached into her cart and handed the other customer one of her coveted purchases. The best part of this exchange was when the receiver of the T.P. began to extract money to pay the giver, the lady shook her head. No. No payment required. The receiver put her hands in prayer position as her thank you.

When I was at the service station to fill up my little car the other day, the attendant told a story of an invention of some sort he has created and has a patent attorney working with him on it. Perhaps we will see him on TV on that show that features new and creative ideas. From service station attendant to entrepreneur! He seemed optimistic about it. His story was refreshing, especially in this negative political climate. I do not want to hear his opinion about politics, nor does he want to hear mine, since I was a captive audience as he filled my gas tank.

Small kindnesses, small town life, observations and life in Mayberry.