Friday, December 28, 2007
Looking Into The Circle...
I took some time off at Christmas to visit relatives on the east coast. As always, it is refreshing to get out of the south to regain a true perspective of how others work, live and play. The most astounding difference that I noted was that most people in big cities are not consumed by their job. Sure, they care about what they do, but more importantly, they focus on the "quality" of life that their job affords them and their families. They focus on play.
Almost all social discussions in which I took part revolved around new and exciting restaurants, books, movies, plays or vacation spots. They talked about where they had been recently, what they had done and what they plan to do in the future. It then dawned on me the primary difference between these "northerners" and us Delta folk is that they have their eyes firmly planted on the future, while we are looking over our shoulder at the past.
True, things move at a bit faster pace in the north, but they face the same social and economic problems that we do; they simply don't permit complacency and apathy to rule their lives.
There is another primary difference in northern conversation. In all of the social situations that I attended, I never heard one word that sounded like gossip... not to say they don't gossip, but that it was not the primary topic at social occasions.
I thought back to a pre-Christmas party that I had attended in Greenville. As I moved from "circle" to "circle", every topic of conversation revolved around local gossip of one sort or another...no discussions of books, movies, vacations, or fun... simply gossip.
I love the south which is why I continue to live here, but it is always good to "step out of the circle" and look in for a while. What you see are alternative ways of living, with different perspectives on what we truly value in life.
Hopefully, 2008 will be the year we bury the past and start looking at how we as individuals can improve our lives. And... if you haven't been out of the Delta in a while, you need to do so. It will give you a renewed hope for what can be, as well as deeper appreciation of the good things we share... like catfish, fried chicken and grits; none of which I have tasted in over ten days.
I shall dine well tonight!
Posted by Forthright at 3:39 PM