Thursday, October 09, 2008

help in numbers

I can't believe it is already Thursday and I haven't yet written about the incredible Saturday we had last weekend. It was a day that really opened my eyes to all the good-hearted people in this world. It's easy to forget that they're out there, but they do, indeed, exist.

The city selected our neighborhood to be the focus of their yearly Vistans R.O.C. (Revitalize Our Community) program. I really didn't know what to expect. They offered to paint our house, paint our fence and help us remove the ivy that has been growing here for over 30 years (as my neighbor who has been here that long informed me). What a job! I couldn't imagine it would all get done. At best I hoped that invasive ivy would get thinned out so we could manage the gruelling task of untangling our yard and fence from it's grip ourselves. But what I discovered is that when you have help in numbers, miracles can happen. Our house was one of several that got some sprucing up. Each house was adopted by a team of volunteers. Our amazing group was a team of students, teachers, staff and parents from Vista Magnet Middle School. A team of contractors and landscape architects couldn't have done a finer job. I woke up Sunday morning feeling like it was the day after Christmas and Santa had brought us a new house.

Those kids painted our entire fence! Everybody chipped in to rip out that ivy - with roots as thick as baseball bats in some sections. The house was painted - I love my new colors! And THEN, the team leaders went about finding surplus plants, sod and mulch from the other teams so we wouldn't be left with dirt where there once was ivy. (I thought having the ivy removed was more than enough to ask for and didn't want to be too greedy to ask for landscaping when initially discussing the project with the coordinators) So not only did our crew get the entire job done, they went above and beyond by throwing some landscaping into the day's work. When all was said and done, I was speechless. How can I ever thank them enough? One thing is certain, I'll definitely be volunteering next year. You can count on that! I'm a pessimist no longer. When over 800 people give up their Saturday to get their hands dirty in somebody else's neighborhood, how can you not see the beauty in that?

Thank you Vistans R.O.C.!
Thank you Vista Magnet Middle School!

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