I write a lot about the importance of community in the coming hard times. The following anecdote, hijacked from a speech given by Warren Buffet, is one of the more beautiful examples of what I mean.

A woman by the name of Belle Eisenberg, who recently passed away, lost her entire family in Auschwitz. She was the only one to make it out. She told Mr. Buffet that every time she met someone she asked herself whether this was the type of person who would hide her from the Nazis. He said that if you had a dozen people in your life who would hide you and you them then you lived a pretty successful life. Mr. Buffet said that he knew billionaires whose own children would not hide them.

This has been quite a week for our neighbors needing favors. Our friend Tom had his bees come in at a time he was not available to set them into the new hives. Bruce was afraid her would lose the bees as it is still pretty cold here so he carted Tom’s hives up to our bee pen and got them settled in. That same night, my friend Leni realized she couldn’t get her risen bread home from cooking class on the back of her scooter (long story)so I drove it home for her. Same Leni’s husband, Mike, needs to borrow our truck tomorrow. Next dook neighbors are getting a new driveway put in and Bruce told them they could park in our driveway until theirs is ready for use.

Some weeks we are on the recieving end of the favors. We have eaten countless meals prepared by others when I was ill. We have planted adopted seedlings and worn hand-me-down clothing. Our children have been minded by friends as have our animals and our plants. We have been picked up from airports and driven lent cars. Our life is a series of good deeds done by people who probably found it inconvenient but did it anyway.

This economic mess is a terrible thing for many families but when I look for the silver lining to a grim cloud it comes from the world getting smaller. Small makes it easier to hold hands with each other.