On a recent afternoon I spent a bit of time at Paulina Springs Book Store researching layouts for my up-and-coming book about my dog Walker, and I spotted the timeless, well-loved book of “Make Way for Ducklings” by Robert McCloskey. It made me smile as it brought back a vivid memory from just a few days ago.

Approaching the roundabout at the west end of town I noticed all of the cars traveling west and all the cars traveling east had come to a dead stop. My heart raced, fearing something dreadful had happened. Much to my surprise and delight I saw a female deer, following the exact lines of the roundabout, leading a single-file procession of does and yearlings safely across the highway. They were in no hurry, and neither were any of the cars that sat waiting. I rejoiced at the patience and kindness being displayed.

That wasn’t my only memory. Earlier in the day I stopped at McDonald’s to pick up a quick bite to eat. While standing in line a kindly gentleman greeted me and asked if I was a local or passing through. I shared I’d been here almost 30 years, and we mused about the fact that we had never met. His kind greeting reminded me of the caliber of people who live here.

As I came out of Paulina Springs a couple whom I did not know greeted me on the street and we visited about the day and the deer that were comfortably trimming the grass. The yearling even allowed me to move close enough to record her presence on my phone. How nice it is to live where not only the people feel comfortable and safe enough to be friendly, but so do the wildlife.

As I turned on my car radio the voice of one of the lawyers in the impeachment proceedings jolted me back to reality. My heart told me to turn it off as it was spoiling my mood. My head told me to stay engaged so I could be informed.

There is much happening in the world at large and probably also here in Central Oregon and Sisters that is not what we want it to be. There is much we feel we have little control over. However, there is much we can impact and do have control over. And, in these disruptive times, there is much we can teach our young people about handling such situations.

Even though we cannot always determine the outcomes of events, we can always determine how we react to those events. We always have it in our power to stand up for what we believe, speak up when it’s appropriate, and to do what is needed to help rectify the situation. In the end, it may still not end up as we would like, however, we will hopefully feel confident that we did what we felt was important. The lesson that needs to accompany is that being respectful, collaborative and positive will usually be the best offense.

Still looking at the day from my earlier mood, I reread a Christmas greeting I saved that I received many years ago. It said, “With every hand holding the hand of another, and every heart heeding the needs of a brother, let us encircle God’s world with love.” In this time of unrest and uncertainty I can’t help but believe this is the mantra the world needs to adopt. With the emphasis on civility and the work going on in our small area of the world, I feel it is happening in Sisters.

I decided to listen to my heart, and turned off the radio.