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Wed., Nov. 26
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WITH THANKS – My thanks this week is extended to the gentleman at Western Door who not only pumped my gas on Monday morning, but took the time to wash my windshield. I was so impressed – not for the fact that this terrific gentleman washed my windshield, but it was his friendliness and the cheerfulness in completing his job that impressed me.

He worked diligently in order to remove the wintry scum that was attached to my windshield. And as he worked he sang – or perhaps hummed a tune! Sitting in my car with the radio off I heard music – and it was absolutely wonderful on a sunshine filled Monday morning.

“Have a good one,” he said cheerfully, adding “No speeding!” as I drove away. How pleasant he was and with what joy he completed his job. If each one worked as hard as this man and filled with joy – singing literally as he worked – wouldn’t the world be so much better?

My heartfelt thanks today to the gas attendant nearest the Tim Horton store on Monday. What excellent service –and for that I am most grateful. Isn’t our community a most wonderful place to live – and purchase gas? I certainly think so!

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WARMEST WISHES – Evelyn Seymour of Potsdam celebrates her birthday today. What an extraordinary woman – my warmest wishes for only the best as you celebrate today!

Mrs. Seymour’s husband Carl is also a fine gentleman – and recently I have learned an excellent baker! He makes the most delicious bread – complete with raisins! My thanks to you, Mr. Seymour, for sharing your marvelous baked goods with a Potsdam visitor!

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INTERNATIONAL FANS – Last week when I mentioned Jeff McCallus’ upcoming retirement from Hannaford’s, my sister in Italy read that column. I think I have mentioned this before – each week my sister reads this column in Italy (online) before the paper even arrives at our Bombay home!

Last week she wrote, “Funny how even I know about Jeff at Hannaford’s from your previous columns!” And then she adds my neighbors mentioned now have an “International fan base!” Yes, you are known - and will be missed - in Italy, too, Jeff!

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CHECK-OUT THANKS – My thanks last week to Kevin in the express aisle. He was most helpful as I prepared to check out the items I had purchased that day. And for that I am most grateful!

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BELATED WISHES – Editor Ryne Martin (my “Boss”) and our neighbor Ken Smallman, two terrific gentlemen celebrated birthdays this past week. I hope you both had marvelous birthday celebrations this year. My wishes are most sincere, although belated by nearly a week, that you both only celebrate the very best in the year to come. (There is only one exception to that – Ryne knows my wishes in our allegiances in NHL play-off play!)

My heartfelt thanks to Editor Ryne for giving me this opportunity to visit with each of you throughout this column each week. And my heartfelt thanks to both Ken and Carole Smallman for always being there for a neighbor in need. They are truly the best neighbors anyone could ever hope to have live across the road!

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TOUCHING BOUQUET – The Mothers’ Day flowers were delivered this year – a gift from a son now grown – living in another state, unable to be home for this day’s celebration. Andy Cook made the delivery from Cook’s Greenery – a gorgeous arrangement. The flowers and the thought touched my heart.

As I have continued to look at this arrangement, I have thought of other arrangements – gifts to Mother from sons much younger. Those working in the florist shops are to me commended on the beauty of their arrangements, but I smiled as my mind went back a few years.

For me at least perhaps the most beautiful floral arrangement I have ever received was a handful of dandelion heads, pulled away from the stems and presented with love to Mom. This arrangement had to be floated in a bowl for there were never any stems to stand upright in a crystal vase. But how beautiful that arrangement was since it was filled with the love of a child.

And then there were the arrangements that came complete with roots and dirt! We went through a period when flowers were just pulled most unceremoniously from the ground! The stems could be trimmed (and depending on the flower the roots were re-planted!) and placed in a vase.

And there were the construction paper flowers carefully cut from bits of paper and glued together to form a flower. One young son glued the paper around a stick and added yellow centers to each flower for Mom. A most beautiful arrangement.

And on this day as I look at the spectacular arrangement from Cook’s Greenery – that gift from a now grown son embodies the gifts from earlier days – the gifts given and arranged with love.

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THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK – Let your hopes not your hurts shape your future. (Inscription on a printed sign at the Dollar General on Malby Avenue, which is now beside my computer in our Bombay home.)

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