July 26, 2021
We attended an event yesterday on Greenwood Lake. It was held in a beautiful little community in West Milford known as Awosting. As we drove through the area on our way to the event, every man, woman and child we passed smiled, waved or said hello – almost without fail.
At the risk of sounding corny, this gave me such a warm, fuzzy feeling! I thought to myself, who wouldn’t want to live in a community where residents were friendly and welcoming to absolute strangers? It was an outstanding endorsement for buying a home in the area. What nice people! Who wouldn’t want to be part of this?
Then I wondered if living in such a beautiful place would result in folks being nicer in general. Maybe life there was so wonderful that they just had to share their joy with everyone!
And that made me think of my garbage men.
Almost every morning, I run or walk in town. I have done this consistently since the start of the pandemic. Most weeks, I pass the same crew, working on the same garbage truck, on one street or another. Twice a week, I see the same driver and the same two guys on the back of the truck.
These are my garbage men. Am I being possessive? Maybe. They actually work for a company called Westphal, but I kind of think of them as mine. We have never met. And I don’t know their names. Yet, every single time I see them, I get a beep, a wave and a “Good Morning!” from each one them. EVERY SINGLE TIME. And it makes my day – EVERY SINGLE TIME.
So, I guess the reality is this: it’s not about WHERE you are, it’s about WHO you are.
We all want to be around people who smile, wave and give you a hello. Imagine what it would do for everyone’s morale if we could encourage our fellow citizens to give away more smiles. Imagine what it would do for property values!
I, for one, have been inspired to renew my own efforts to give a smile, a wave or a friendly greeting on my walks. I know how much it means to me. And I’m pretty sure it will go a long way towards helping people feel good about living in Oradell – even if there isn’t a beautiful lake nearby!