Let us seek the good in our community

I am writing in response to David Allen and Willson Bloch, who have advocated that we write some letters with positive messages.

I have lived on my three acres of land down McElmo Canyon for 20 years now. This summer at the Cortez farmers' market, someone asked me what I liked about living in Cortez/Montezuma County. My reply was that this is a community where people look out for one another. In my 20 years here, I have gotten to know many people. I enjoy walking into a store or going to the bank and having people call me by name. Those who do not know my name know me as the "Tomato Lady" because they have bought my vegetables at the area farmers' markets.

There are a few people here who are angry and a bit hard to get along with, but the majority are good, hardworking, honest people of good will, and even the cranky ones can be good neighbors if we seek their help. I am 72 years old, and I have lived from one end of this country to another, in big cities and small, in rural areas and in small towns, yet I have never met a person who did not have some good in him/her.

When I was about six years old, I heard something on the radio that I have always remembered. It was about a man who was often cranky and hard to get along with. It turned out that he had trouble with his feet and could never find any shoes to fit, and when he was angry it was because his feet hurt. The man's name was Woodrow Wilson.

We all have feet of clay and sometimes they hurt, especially when we begin to decline into the vale of years. But we also have good things to offer the world, a League of Nations perhaps or at least the hope that we can end all wars.

At this time when the whole world is mourning the senseless killing of 20 beautiful little children and the six adults who died trying to protect them, we need to remember that on Tuesday, December 25, we will be celebrating the birth of a child, who according to the story would grow up to be a great teacher, prophet, even the savior of the world. Whether or not you believe that story is literal, historical fact, it still represents the hope that the world, the universe, is a place where life and community and love can thrive.

He is reported to have said: "Seek and ye shall find, and this I charge thee, love one another." Let us seek the good in our community. It is there. I know; I have found it and can bear witness to it. Even some of the crankiest among us have helped me when I needed help.

Merry Christmas to all, and God bless us every one.

Barbara Lynch, who has a doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania, moved here 20 years ago from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, where she worked for a defense contractor. She lives down McElmo Canyon and is well known for the tomatoes she sells at local farmers' markets.