A Way with Words
‘Love thy neighbour’
So as I sit here at my dining room table, my laptop resting in front of me, my baby daughter asleep in her pushchair next to me and a fresh cup of tea at my side. I feel it is o.k to admit to you that I am a little nervous about writing my first piece for Pencil Stubs. I have read many articles in previous months and it is fair to say that the talent and level of writing on this site is very high! So I am extremely thankful and honoured to be in a position where I am writing here too. I can only hope that my work will be well perceived and that my readers will take from it what I intend, that is to instill positivity, to inspire through words and to hopefully implant a sense of calm, peace, love and tranquility within each of you.
I have thought long and hard about what I should write for my opening column and I decided to place all my trust in my guides and allow them to tell me what words to type. I shall take a couple of nice long deep breaths and just listen. When I feel compelled to type, I will, I know the words will come to me and I know that these words will all form and join together to create what will very shortly become, my first piece ...
It was Sunday just passed, early evening, the sun was still shining and there was a lovely sense of peace in the air. Something that I have always come to associate with a Sunday evening. Dinner had been prepared, devoured and everything cleaned and put away. My two small daughters had both been bathed and were happily playing in the living room in their clean pyjamas, all ready for bed. However, this peace was suddenly disturbed by the not so distant sound of an ambulance which came whizzing past our apartment building only to turn into the adjoining road. I watched as it sped up the road only to stop five houses down.
I immediately called my husband Fabio in despair and told him to call his parents to check if they were both ok. You see, they live just five houses down on the adjoining road. I only have to stretch and lean ever so slightly out of our back balcony window and I can see their house. At that moment, we saw the paramedics run into the house next door to my inlaws and my heart immediately sank (whilst remaining eternally thankful that my husband’s parents were both safe and well). That is the house where a young couple live with their three beautiful children.
Moments later, their youngest, a little boy who is just thirteen months old (we always remember his age as he was born just one month before our own youngest child) was being held in the arms of one of the paramedics who quickly carried him into the ambulance. By this point, there were now two ambulances and one police car all outside this house and our little side road was now filled with people spilling out of their houses and hanging out of apartment windows, all desperate for news on this sweet baby boy’s fate. I noticed during these moments, as I too hung out of my own balcony window (and my husband went outside to join the rest of the neighbors on the street) that everyone knew the little boy’s name and the family involved. One person only had to say “oh its little Lorenzo” and everyone gasped in a clear state of anguish. A few neighbours even noticed that our eldest daughter was standing next to me on the balcony and they greeted her by name.
Now for me, as someone who was born and bred in the city of Birmingham (in the United Kingdom) this is not something that I had come to experience much. Sure, I was able to name my next door neighbours on either side of me and was in a position to say ‘hi’ to the man who lived over the road directly opposite my house but never by name, always just a quick wave of the hand and a mumbled ‘hello’ and that was our daily interaction for about four years.
Now here, in the North of Italy, in our little quiet village in the countryside, on the outskirts of town, close to the mountains, I find myself in a completely different environment. I can walk outside of our apartment and people will stop and say hello, they will greet me by name (and I them), they will stop and talk to my children and ask how my husband is, they will ask when my father is flying over next to see us. They remember our previous conversation and will ask how such-and-such went. When a new baby is born, the proud parents will display a wreath outside their front door with their child’s name and details of the birth and you will see people literally cross the road to go and read this wonderful news and learn the baby’s name! People care! We are all strangers to one another really but we all still care. And it was only then, during that moment, as we were all waiting in anticipation to hear if little baby Lorenzo would be ok, that I realised something very profound to me and very important … WE ARE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER! Each and every single one of us, no matter how ‘different’ we all may appear to one another, we are all, each and every one of us are EXACTLY THE SAME!
Sure, we are all here, we each have our families and our busy lives, our bills to pay and our schedules to keep, but really none of us know exactly what we are doing! Not truly, not really! We are all here for one purpose and that is for our souls to experience what it is like to live in the psychical form. We each have set out to learn (through our life’s experiences and lessons) what is it that our souls truly want to know. We are all in this game of life together and it is moments like last Sunday that I realise how similar we all actually are. We are all just trying to win at our lives and to play the game properly. So please, let us all be like my little village in Piemonte. Let us stop and say hello to our neighbours and I mean really stop and listen to what they have to say. Maybe the next time you see your neighbour as you’re both taking out the garbage or collecting your mail, say hi and ask their name. Simply by taking the time and effort to learn and remember a person’s name can truly make all the difference to your relationship with them. Let us all show love and support to one another and ‘love thy neighbour’.
As my first column comes to a close I can hear you all wondering what happened to the little boy … I heard this morning that he is doing much better, he is still in hospital but is hoping to come home tomorrow. He had a very high temperature but is now on the mend and is expected to make a full recovery. I thank you for taking the time to read my first column and I hope I have made a very good first impression. Until next time my dear friends …
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