Sharing: Time Talent Treasure
There should be times in everyone’s life when you stop because something that you saw or heard or read or whatever came into our minds and it should not be let go without further thought. Such were two headlines in last Sunday’s Globe paper. They were: TOURISTS BEHAVING BADLY (Tourists Go Home) and 30-SOMETHINGS SHOWING NANA’S CHINA THE DOOR.
Amsterdam has a population of 873,000 residents and tourist visitors that will number nearly 20 million. The number of tourists are not the problem says the general manager of the Waldorf Astoria hotel. “Good business!” The way the visitors behave is the problem and he, along with others, are not happy about it. “The city was not prepared for this change. We need a code of conduct to educate Americans who are traveling abroad on how we live and on our culture. Examples: people eating on the steps of our historic buildings and leaving their trash behind; scantily clad tourists displaying copious amounts of skin in churches and holy places; people strolling along paying no attention to bike lanes vs. pedestrian foot paths; drunken behavior, sometimes buffoonish. etc. Our city and culture are not being respected.” Holland: people stomping on tulips taking selfies. Obnoxious travelers ruining priceless statues by high-fiving them. And so on.
If it doesn’t come from Crate and Barrel or Pottery Barn or IKEA, the 30 somethings don’t want it, admits almost every antique dealer. If it won’t go into the dishwasher or microwave, it has no value. Nana’s china or pieces of furniture don’t make the cut. And so if you find a dealer who will take these ‘old things’, they eventually end up at Goodwill. And so goes the history of your family and the difficulties someone experienced and the length of time it took to accumulate the whole set. And so goes the love and pride someone had to own such treasures.
Our country is currently in a state in which many are not happy. We struggle with the truth, niceness, caring for each other, a sense of value or even a way to define values, isolation, and so many more ways of belief by which we use to live. When it started and how to change it is wide open for discussion. I don’t pretend to have the answers. But if we all stop and ponder the questions, and in addition, we stop tolerating improper actions by others, then maybe slowly our country, our lives, our immediate environment will value others, their efforts, their meanings for life. Each of us needs to self examine the importance of our values and actions. And maybe as Time mag once asked; “What would Jesus do?”
by Kathy Reilly