I happened to catch this piece on the Today Show this week, about the family of a Butler University basketball player, who couldn't afford to make the trip to Houston along with their other 9 kids, to see their son play in the Final Four NCAA tournament. That is, until the town got together and raised the money to send them.
This story really touched my heart…. and made me pause to think about some of what my kids are missing out on, by not living in a small town where people “know each other's business”, and really look out for one another. I grew up in a medium-sized suburb of Cleveland, and I spent my afternoons and summers as a child playing in my backyard as well as the backyard of all of the neighborhood kids. My husband grew up in a smaller-sized town than I did, and he can tell a childhood story of the lady mail carrier that carried him home from the Dairy Queen (just down the street) in her mail bag one day when he wandered away from home as a preschooler.
And it's not like we are raising our kids in a big city now or anything…. but I have to admit that I don't know my mail carrier's name, or whether or not he has kids, let alone whether or not they play college basketball. And my kids aren't likely to see a donation box down at the local barber shop to collect money to help out a local family that we all know. And sometimes I wish that they understood how it feels to really be a part of a small town community. But instead I will have to settle for showing them videos like this….