By: H. Anne Thurston, Columnist
The sun is elsewhere today, the skies are grey and the trees are dropping early leaves as the wind sweeps through Boyne City. The grass and pavement are glistening with last night’s rain and there is a chill in the air. Sounds pretty dreary but actually is the perfect setting for my early autumn stuffy nose and cough. I know the sun will shine again and the trees are on the verge of becoming unbelievably breathtaking in their fall attire. There is a hint of the luscious red orange of the maple on one branch of a tree across the street from me. It is like an exclamation mark in the family’s back yard; a sample of what lies ahead for all of us in this special and beautiful area.[private]
That same striking beauty surrounds us in so many ways, almost hidden from view at times. An unexpected smile on the face of a passerby, a ‘hello’ on the street or in a store thrust into our lives as a special moment that reminds me of the sun’s sudden emergence from behind a cloud. It lies within the very beings of our neighbors and community. I experienced it yesterday when I took Ray to the emergency room because of a painfully infected and swollen hand. Everyone from the admittance lady to the x-ray tech, nurse and doctor were concerned, wise, caring and able to do what was required. It has always been so here in Boyne. Although we have no hospital within our city two excellent facilities are available a short drive’s distance. Our very own clinic on north Park Street is an offspring of one of the hospitals which saw our need for such services within ‘next door’ reach. In addition, one of our local doctors has stepped forward to give the city its own ‘free’ clinic on State Street by donating his services weekly. Other community members work to maintain this wonderful gift to Boyne City by also working there or supporting it with financial gifts. The need is ongoing. As for my cold, thanks to a local pharmacist’s advice I am like the sun, peeking around the clouds today. No snuffing and very little hacking.
Last week’s Gazette told of a local realtor and his staff who support a food mission in Charlevoix by donating a percentage of their income to it. Those of us who attend our local churches also help our neighbors in need by donating to the Deacon’s Fund. Original the fund was collected and disbursed by one of our churches, but as its work became recognized many other of the city’s congregations joined the project so it has become that of the entire community. I know of numerous individuals and groups who willingly help others when the need is discovered. Food pantries and resale shops such as Challenge Mountain make life less expensive to live for many Boyne City folk.
All this unseen, silent reaching out of hands within our town holds it together in a magical manner. About a month or two ago I discovered this myself. I misplaced my car keys. Of course, this is not that unusual, but what transpired is beyond imagination. Ray and I looked and looked – all over the house, yard and garage. Of course, he gave me a bad time about the whole thing but joined in the search. No keys could be found. We sat down and went over the whole afternoon; where we had been that they might have been dropped. This got us nowhere as the car was parked at the curb in front of the house silently screaming at us both that we had had the keys until we got home as it was parked there in plain sight. They could not have been left someplace else. As all drivers know car keys no longer can be replaced for a few cents like a door key – they are expensive!
The keys were not found. I was convinced they had been dropped in the yard –all fifteen feet between the front porch and the curb. It was then Glen’s market called to ask if I could pick up my keys. They had been turned in. “Why, Glen’s? I asked Ray.
“I can’t believe you don’t know they have a return service for lost keys, he responded and had me read the fine print on my Glen’s card. I was completely dumbfounded at such a thoughtful service. To this day I have no idea who found the keys, probably on the sidewalk as they walked by, and knowing of the return service took the time to place them at Glen’s. Hopefully you may be reading this and if so, “Thank you”, Anne.[/private]