Saturday, December 7, 2013

The little people or...

It’s not only the little things.

I woke up in a foul mood this morning and although I had valid reasons for feeling the way I did, I still warned my housemate of the situation one for which she was in no way responsible (and I won’t bore my readers, however some of it involved Fatca!).

Off for my usual coffee with a friend, but as she too has many problems there was no light to be had there.

Fortunately the sun was shining so I proceeded to run an errand in France, returning to my own post office to pick up the mail and mail something in return. Here, a happy turn of events (the usual long line – in spite of the fact that the post office will be closing down due to “decreasing letters, packages and bill payments”, but what could one expect, they became a private entity this past June so no longer a public service, but rather a private-for-profit company) led me to going down to the larger post office in the next village down.

Now, it wasn’t the post office per se – although I was able to get more accomplished there than usual – but rather the fact that I had forgotten that one of my neighbors has a Christmas stall in the public space in front of said post office: Christmas shopping now done! That perked me up a bit: a little thing.

But even that – as lovely as it was – is not what I was thinking of whilst writing the title of this blog.  At that stand I ran into an acquaintance: one of whom I call the “little people”. Not because of their size, nor yet because of any lack of importance, but rather because they are one of those people with whom one exchanges a hello, how are you, without always knowing their name or who they are: one of those people who, if they go missing for awhile, one wonders – where did X go?

I actually do know the first name of this particular woman and we hadn’t seen each other for some time so we got to chatting (I’m not my father’s daughter for nothing), first about the lovely items on the stand, then about “how are you” etc. I, in my bad mood, complained of all the problems that I had had, and it came out that she hadn’t had such a good year either and would be glad to see the New Year.  At this point I was feeling a bit ashamed as she is an elderly woman and I could well imagine the health problems that she might have had. Yet, in spite of that - and I have never seen her frown - she said something that struck me and totally changed my mood: “yes we have had bad things this year, but we’re still here”. It’s quite often the little things said by the “little” people that contain the kernels of wisdom.

So in spite of any perceived problems, or any very real ones for that matter, one thing should remain uppermost in our minds.

“Yes, but we are still here”.