Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Here's a story that inspires me. It appeared in the February 20, 2002 issue of the Fayette, Alabama paper ("The Times Record"). It was originally written by Polly Essary and re-quoted in the book, "Special Delivery" by James McWhorter:
"There was a little old lady who lived alone on the side of a country road. Her days were long and lonely and many times the only person passing to speak to was the rural mail carrier.
Faithfully, she sat in her old porch swing and waited patiently -- even hopefully for him. Even though she never received a letter, she'd wave cheerfully and call out a friendly greeting, which he always returned. Then, she'd go indie -- for the excitement and expectancy of the day was past. HOwever, bright and early the next morning, she would return to her porch, regardless of the weather to wait again. Years passed, and the postman retired. Looking back over his time of service and recalling patrons and incidents, he realized how very mucj she had memant to him. Many times her heerful greetings had brightened his day and made him more appreciative of his ability to work, to serve, and to travel along the lovely countryside, to see poeple and mix and mingle with them. She had taught a great lesson in patience as she waited enedlessly for a letter which never came. Considering how truly importnat she had been to him, he decided to write her a letter of thanks.
Some time later, her body was found int he little house by the side of the road. She had died all alone. The letter was found in her apron pocket. Its edges were frayed and worn and it was stained. Evindently, she had read it over and over again and again, feeding on the joy and comfort the few kind words ha offered to he weary and lonely heart."
I've actually read many stories about the power of a kind letter in various people's lives. Even in this age of e-mail and other electonic forms of communication, a snail mail word of encouragement can be a treasure to someone.