I am a 74-year-old male, whose body is busy collecting payback for abuse and broken bones I’ve impacted on my body over years of hard work and some times even harder play. As a result, I now shuffle along with my cane. One thing about needing a cane is you now have only one hand left to do whatever needs done like open a door. Not a problem until you add a package, a bag of groceries or one of a hundred items.

My experience, and I assume others, is the amazing continuing consideration from all kinds of strangers in all sorts of situations. These Samaritans open doors, help with cumbersome packages and generally go out of their way to be helpful. They offer their assistance like it is just natural expecting nothing in return.

Case in point: Last Saturday at Hannaford in Gray, when I exited my car I counted 34 people outside in line to enter. By the time I started my trek to the back of the line, the line had swelled to over 50.

Then, as I passed customer 10, a female voice called out. “Excuse me, sir, why don’t you take my spot, and I will go to the rear.” Then a lady behind that lady told the first lady to stay where she was and she would go to the rear. Then a gentleman just ahead piped up and said, “Everybody, stay where you are.”

How does one respond? With great pride in our neighbors.

James C. Monroe


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