Love is Community
Once upon a time The Dingo was sorting through his mail and he came across a letter that was delivered to the wrong address. It was meant to go to his neighbor who lived just a few houses down. Her name was Ms. Jade, a kind elderly lady who lived alone.
The Dingo would often pass by her house during his morning walks. He remembered thinking how she had one of the nicest houses on the block. It was always tidy, the lawn and garden were well kept, and she would often be found enjoying the afternoon breeze from her rocking chair on the front porch. Recently though, The Dingo had noticed the sparkle in her house had vanished: the grass was overgrown, the garden looked lifeless, and Ms. Jade didn’t seem to be spending much time outside anymore.
As The Dingo approached the neighbor’s house he looked around and noticed the paint was peeling off the walls and the windows needed a good cleaning. He rang the doorbell and Ms. Jade answered, “It’s so nice to see you Dingo! What brings you by?” The Dingo explained the postal mix up and handed his neighbor the letter. With a smile she thanked him and offered to bring out some sweet tea for them to enjoy on the front porch. The Dingo accepted the invitation graciously.
Concerned for Ms. Jade, he asked her if everything was okay. She explained that all was well, but about 6 months ago she got laid off from her part-time job at the library because of city budget cuts, so times were tight. She used to be able to pay a young man down the street to help her with various chores around the house that were too difficult for her to do alone, like mowing the lawn, cleaning the windows, and other random odds & ends. With some recent health issues that she was just now overcoming, she found herself having to prioritize her savings to go towards the medical costs first. Hopefully, after she found another job, she would be able to pay for some hired help to get her house sparkling again.
The Dingo felt bad for Ms. Jade. He didn’t exactly have a green thumb or any house painting supplies, but he could certainly help her with something. So he offered to clean her windows. She was delighted and thanked him profusely.
As he walked back home to get a change of clothes and some cleaning supplies, he thought about how he could further help Ms. Jade with the many things that needed to be done around her house. If he tried to tackle the various tasks alone it would take forever but, then he remembered a quote that he saw the other day: “Many hands make light work.”*. “THAT’S IT!” The Dingo shouted, “I’ll reach out to my community and ask for help! Together we’ll get Ms. Jade back to her old self in no time!”
But first, he decided to look up the word “community” in the Merriam-Webster dictionary and this is what he found:
- : a group of people who live in the same area (such as a city, town, or neighborhood)
- : a group of people who have the same interests, religion, race, etc.
- : a group of nations
From the definition, he figured out that his community could include anyone and everyone. Well, in this particular situation, anyone and everyone was going to consist of those neighbors, friends & family that were willing to help. He quickly found someone who would help paint Ms. Jade’s house, another who would cut her lawn and get her garden growing again, and he also got little Max to commit to helping her with other random odds and ends. The Dingo even contacted his friend, a local bookstore owner, and found out that they were looking for part-time help.
With a smile on his face, The Dingo went back to Ms. Jade’s and broke the good news to her. He explained how several people were going to help make her house sparkle again in no time; he also informed her how himself & little Max were going to come over once a week to help with random odds & ends; and then he gave her the bookstore owner’s name & phone number and told her that he was expecting her call for a possible job offer.
Ms. Jade was moved with emotion as her eyes welled up with tears thinking of the love that she was witnessing. She knew without the help of many, without The Dingo’s big heart and quick action, and without the kindness and generosity of strangers, she couldn’t of done it herself.
As The Dingo washed the windows, he was thankful that he was in a position to help Ms. Jade. He knew that walking in love was a full time job and if we all stopped for just a moment and looked around us, we could always find opportunities to be a blessing in someone’s life. Today, he was able to be a blessing to Ms. Jade.
The Dingo Walks in Love is a project that teaches lesson in love with the power of art, social media, books, pubic art, & random acts of kindness.