"Good intentions will always be pleaded for every assumption of authority ... the Constitution was made to guard against the dangers of good intentions. There are men in all ages who mean to govern well, but they mean to govern. They promise to be good masters, but they mean to be masters." - Noah Webster

"There is no worse tyranny than forcing a man to pay for what he does not want just because you think it would be good for him."
-- Robert A. Heinlein

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Friends From Indiana

During the cold months, we dream about the sunny, warm days that we will spend down at the artificial beach on Lake Chatuge.  Last summer Twyla and I were there twice and sometimes three times a week, and the fish got so used to being fed that they would hang around in a specific area waiting for us to arrive.

It is the nature of being in the rural mountains that you will meet people from as far away as Germany who simply want to enjoy the view and be at peace with their surroundings.  You just never know who you are going to meet.  Most people keep to themselves, and unfortunately children will run wild with very little adult supervision.  To call it annoying would be putting it mildly.

In most public settings, when you have to deal with rug rats being around, it is a most unpleasant experience.  When we go put our chairs down in the water, we go early on a weekday and hope that we have an hour or two before people start to show up.  I'll admit that such would be true whether the people who come after us were 9 or 90, but we especially are aware that kids are usually an unwelcome intrusion.

Oh wait.  If you are thinking of chastising me because you think I have a bad attitude about kids, then hold up.  I blame the parents.  Yeah.  I said it, and I mean it.

There was a time when my dad or mom made it very clear that I would behave like a gentleman in public.  I was expected to act like "an adult."  I put that in quotes because the meaning of that phrase has suffered so much degradation over time that I'm not sure that most people reading this would understand the term.  After all, we live in world that pays attention to people like Charlie Sheen, watches shows like Jersey Shore and elected Bill Clinton as president.  You can't get much lower than that  (Just kidding, I know BO is president now. Having a lecherous, rapist for a president almost seems like a step up now, doesn't it?)

Anyway, it is indeed a pleasure when you meet kids who reflect well on their parents and the manner in which they were reared.  We met such kids at Lake Chatuge this past week.  Most kids run by and act like they have not a shred of respect for anyone's existence at all.  The children you see in the pictures are an amazing exception.  They immediately were curious as to what we were doing and when they saw that we were feeding the fish, they quietly listened to instruction and came and sat down to enjoy the experience.

Most kids have an attention span of about 20 seconds.  These kids were willing to come and sit and trust what we said about sitting quietly and letting the fish come in and enjoy watching them up close.  That didn't happen by accident.  Children don't have such appreciation without it being imparted to them from parents.

They were from somewhere up north in the heartland, in Indiana.  They were in town in Hiawassee, Georgia for a Christian motorcycle organization event going on at the Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds.  I didn't ask them to spell their names, so if I get it wrong you'll have to forgive me.  These pleasant young people were Jamie, Zachary, Ben, Isaiah, Lydia and Elena.  They sat there quietly and talked respectfully to each other and to us.  I sat there throwing shredded cheese all around them so the brim would swim and eat and even brush against them from time to time.  They really enjoyed the experience, and were even thoughtful enough to thank us for the experience.  That's something that rarely happens with the few other kids who are willing to sit quietly and let us show them this experience.

When we parted company with these well behaved, respectful kids, Twyla and I thought of how it gave us hope for the future.  I hope their parents know how much we appreciate their efforts in bringing up such good kids in a world that wants to drag them into the sewer.

A big, hearty thank you to the parents who trained these kids.  Keep up the good work.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please don't make me disable comments because you couldn't maintain decorum and civil discourse. You can disagree all you want to, just don't get nasty.