Common ground, what a lovely, lofty to-be-cherished concept, I reflected at the end of yesterday. “Why yesterday?” you must be pondering and “common ground — what on earth could have occurred to bring such a subject up in the first place?”. Yesterday afternoon was filled with good natured laughter, a respectful sharing of beliefs, and added to those wonderful actions, a lot of sweat equity also occurred, with a promise of more of the same next week. It was such a breath of fresh air, doing something to achieve an openly acknowledged common goal, sharing ideas without wondering how these ideas “might” be received and, really refreshing, NOT having conversation sprinkled with “they, we, them, us.” Yesterday afternoon was a gift that I shall long cherish.
As many of you know, I have a “dream” of some day being able to turn the old school that graces the market property into a place that gives back to the community. I have repeated “the dream” out loud to so many people SO many times, that I am sure that eyes have begun to glaze over at the mere mention of the concept. Last week, after such a conversation, but with someone who had never heard the “school story” before, a door slipped ever so quietly open a crack to let small rays of light in, to maybe give some substance, albeit small, to the ghost of the dream. Hey, lots of journeys start with baby steps. Two young women, who stopped to shop at the market, asked me about the old school which, as you all know, I can become tedious about, telling its story. I told the story, they listened, and then…they asked if there was ANYTHING they could do to help. I told them that a lot of work needed to be done on the school — just to even make it look like someone cared, to show that it had potential. They said they were ready to roll up their sleeves and get busy, in fact, eager to make their words turn into action. We got a lot done yesterday, the three of us, yes we did.
In total transparency, as some of you “may” have surmised, they are Mormon “Sisters” — and I am…well, I am me. Yesterday truly left me in thoughtful reflection — having this unexpected gift of common ground grace my day. At the end of the day, I was left wondering if, just perhaps, “common ground” could make its way into our daily lives once again and, that real listening to one another with respect and validating each other’s thoughts, even if we don’t agree in concept, could actually become a reality once again. Who knows, it could catch on. It could become as accepted as those random acts of kindness we hear about with more frequently these days that give us hope for a kinder and gentler world.