Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The kindness of strangers

n the short time we have been here I have encountered some of the most interesting folks. Most of them are struggling just to make ends meet. Everyone of them has provided me with a renewed faith in humans.

The first contact we made down here was our post mistress. This woman has lived here all of her life and knows just about everything about everyone in a 25 mile range. The wife and her have hit it off well and we have bartered for some of her fresh eggs.

Then there is our nearest neighbor, he is a retired business owner who has been on the hill for several seasons. He worked in the electrical field and has given us valuable advice on our power systems. He was also the source of our propane fireplace that we use for heat. Without him we would have been a lot colder. Just having someone within walking distance is a comfort, even if it is a long walk. He also introduced us our next new friend, the trader.

Our trader friend has been invaluable and is fast becoming a good friend of mine. We have very similar outlooks on the world and its condition right now. Mr. Trader has made his way bartering and trading for everything he has, or ever had, for the last 20 years or so. Everything I have needed on the cheep he has found almost the same day. He is like the Radar O'Rielly of the backwoods, he knows the connections to get what you need.

Mr. Trader made the arrangement for us to get a ride into town so we could get our truck. We rode in with a cool old guy who's idea of the high life is having his cookies and ice cream ( peanut butter and chocolate ) and taking care of his 8 cats, including one wild stinky black kitty with a nice white stripe down its back. This wonderful old guy ran us around in town in some nasty weather, just so we could get our truck back I owe him a least gallon of his favorite ice-cream when I see him.

I was never one to ask for help much back in the city. With a very few exceptions, when I did ask I was let down. Everyone was more tied up in their own problems to really be worried with someone else's problems. Folks around here have learned that you need to look out for each other. It's a lesson that a lot of folks in the city need to relearn. The kindness of strangers is something we can rely on.

The Humbled Geek of Treehaven

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