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There are many, many great moments in the growing season. It would be hard to pick a favorite; the first ripe tomato, the first day when you can strip down to your short sleeves, the last plantings of garlic. All of these are quite lovely, and I’m not saying that it’s the best, but the moment I look forward to most is when the greenhouse fills up and the leaves form a lush canopy of green.
In these last few weeks the greenhouse has gone from completely empty, to having a ¼ of it filled, to having almost all the top benches being filled. There are still many germ flats demanding to have our attention. In the coming weeks we will drag pallets into place and create another bench down the center, put plants on pallets under the benches, cram them into every space we can find.
I was walking down Meldrum to the soup kitchen entrance this morning when I ran into one of the guests. Our conversation went something like this:
Guest: “Good Morning, Br. Bob, I saw you on T.V.”
Me: “Did I do well?”
Guest: “Oh yes, you do so much for people. You are a kind man. Everybody should get along. God made everybody…I don’t drink, do drugs or get high.”
Me: “Good for you, brother.”
The other day, I was doing a transaction at the local gas station. It was taking an extremely long time. I was getting anxious about the long line taking shape behind me. I turned to the gentleman just behind me and told him I was sorry this was taking so long. He replied with a smile, I have time, I have plenty of time. Dont you worry. And as I was leaving, he blessed with the beautiful greeting I hear so often in Detroit, “You be careful out there. Watch your back.”
Last Friday afternoon, a distraught mother sort of pushed her 8 year old daughter into my office so that I could talk with her. The little girl, Alice, had a crumbled paper indicating that she had already served a one day “in-school” suspension and now had just been served a one day “out of school” suspension for outbursts, defiance and talking back.
I asked Alice to tell me all that had happened. She pretty much agreed that she explodes, has outbursts and often, has great trouble controlling her behavior. We talked briefly about how important it was to think before reacting and screaming angry words. She told me that my previous idea of counting to ten just didn’t work for her; did I have any other ideas?