Nancy Merrill is hosting a photo challenge. The theme this week – Fire
“Parents’ Weekend” (and later, as it became known…”Family Weekend”) for those of us who had kids in college…was a chance to visit at the beginning of the school year. To check in with our college student. Perhaps sit in on a class. Eat in the dining hall. Meet their new friends. Get a small glimpse of what this new life was like. I looked forward to those weekends every year.
However, it could be awkward. For newly independent 18 year olds shepherding their parents around campus. Fortunately, activities were planned. Tours. Speakers. Student performances and Acapella groups abounded.
One year…something extra special happened…
My daughter went to college in Providence, Rhode Island. One parents’ weekend evening we experienced WaterFire. A yearly event that began in 1994. Close to 100 floating braziers/bonfires lit up the river running through downtown. Accompanied by beautiful recorded instrumental music. An almost mystical experience. Definitely unique. And memorable.
If you stop to be kind you must swerve often from your path.
I have stopped watching the nightly news. Which is totally unlike me. Usually wanting to know…What Is Going On. The importance of being informed and up-to-date was always at the top of my list. Part of being a responsible citizen.
It seems to me there used to be more balance. The good and the evil. The positive and the negative. Now all I do is wince. Our leaders fighting. Shouting. Accusing. Deaf to the voices of reason…or fairness…or empathy. Especially empathy. Unwilling to even pause and consider a different path.
Nightly Breaking News punches story after story. Announcements line up in 10 second sound bites. Assault…Abuse…Cheating…Lying…. Young child missing…young child found in a shallow grave. Inconsolable parent. Another shooting. Blurry security camera video. One more senseless loss of a sister, a brother.
The news anchor drones on, his face barely changing expression. Night after night.
Rarely would I see kindness…until the final 2 minutes of the broadcast. Showcasing an act of generosity. Compassion. Selflessness.
Good to know there are people still out there…
On a different path.