Monday, November 14, 2011

149th Week Update - Miles Neighborhood Food Collection Project

Hi Folks,
What Would a Lioness Do?

View of Miles Street from behind the wheel. Miles Street
floods like this every heavy rain. Hopefully the new Arroyo
Chico project will remedy the situation.
With all of that rain late Sunday morning it wasn’t hard to be captivated by Mother Nature. The mini river flowing down Miles Street forced me to drive on the left or traverse the floodwaters in my car by driving up into driveways. It was slow going but I did keep my leather boots dry.

Fifteen minutes into my rounds the clouds parted and the sun came out and stayed out until I finished at about 2. When something like that happens—clouds parting and the rains stopping—I always think some force of nature wants to help me feed the hungry. On the other hand, when it comes to everything else in life, I generally experience nothing that could be called luck.

By the time I got to Gerry’s home toward the end of Miles, the sun was seriously shining. The front porch had been rearranged and the rocking chair where the can of food normally rested on the seat now stood empty on the right side of the front door.

I hadn’t seen Gerry for several weeks since her husband of 60 years passed. With no sound from inside 30 seconds after pressing the bell I started to turn and go. The door suddenly opened and there stood Gerry in all her pink-robed splendor.

Following the intelligence of nature.
She mentioned how beautiful her husband’s service was and she was especially proud that five priests officiated making it all the more wonderful. Eventually I turned the conversation to how she was doing and how she was getting along. To most of my questions she answered no. She had no dog to keep her company because the last one was killed months ago and the pain of the loss was keeping her from get another one. I suggested a hamster because they make themselves know at night and that sound can be comforting. She smiled and again said no.

In the past two years, Gerry and I have had some very honest conversations especially when she became overwhelmed with caring for her grand kids and her ailing husband. Then as now I told her she really has to think of herself first and take care of herself. I mentioned that probably the best example in nature of one caring for oneself and others is the lioness. 

Gerry listened intently as I explained that the lioness is a skilled provider and when she and the other lionesses in the pride bring down game, they eat first. Then the lion is allowed to eat followed by the cubs. If this order were not strictly observed, the pride would eventually perish.
If the lioness, the sole provider for the pride, ate last, there may not be enough food for her. She would grow weak, diminishing her effectiveness as a hunter. When this happens, the whole pride—her family, in other words—would grow weak too, and eventually die.

I could tell Gerry liked my little nature lesson and perhaps when she gets that lonely feeling at night, she may realize that being the matriarch of her family means that she comes first so that her family can last. I sure hope so but I will still keep checking on my friend every Sunday.

Fran Coleman, Senior Companion Program Manager of Our Family Services was the Master of Ceremonies for the Senior Companion’s Annual Recognition of Service 2011 program, held Wednesday, November 9 at Gee’s Garden Bistro.
Sue Krahe, Executive Director of Our Family Services and I scoot around the room handing out two Certificates of Appreciation to each of the volunteers. Photo by Maripaz Preciad

One Can A Week
Certificate of Appreciation
Who Called These Folks Retired
Even at the Annual Recognition luncheon for the Senior Companion program the food donations for the Community Food Bank piled up at the front registration desk. It is obvious that the volunteers at Our Family Services are not only committed to helping seniors in need, they also want to feed as many hungry kids and their families as they can.

Just Another Sunday
When I arrived at the Community Food Bank Monday afternoon some of the food containers in the trunk of my car were still damp from the dousing they got the day before. What’s so impressive about my neighbors is rain or shine the food keeps coming.

We collected a total of 190 lbs. of food. The money we donated amounted to $38.00, a $25.00 check and $13.00 in cash.

See you Sunday,


No comments:

Post a Comment