First, for regular followers of the blog I apologize for the delay in today’s post. An explanation/excuse is forthcoming. Second, as a word of caution today’s post is another mixed bag with some possible deviation into controversial topics beyond Route 66 and the usual discussion.
I am the manager for a truck leasing office, a franchise operated by the local Chrysler agency, and small rental car agency here in Kingman. This family owned operation is hands down the most generous firm that I have worked for. Enhancing the sense of satisfaction with my job is the quality of the trucks rented and the commitment to customer satisfaction displayed by the franchise parent company.
In spite of the hard times, in spite of the cash for clunker debacle, in spite of slow sales they are holding to tradition and providing their employees with a sincere, heartfelt show of appreciation and contributing to the community during the Christmas season. First, one half of the building that houses my offices (a remnant from the old Hobb’s Truck Stop with Route 66 at the front door) has been donated to the Toys For Tots program, a stellar program that exemplifies the best of America and that hints of the possibilities for resolving problems as well as meeting needs when a community pulls together rather than turn to Washington for solutions.
Last night the dealership hosted Marty Bucks Night (the owners name is Martin). This unusual get together for salaried and commissioned employees is an auction for a wide array of gifts and prizes with the money used being Marty bucks.
Its an evening of food, fun, and camaraderie that is unusual in any company but especially in the competitive world of an automobile dealership. This weekend is the Christmas party, a dinner for employees and their families.
The automobile dealer has been an integral component in community development for almost a century, Yes, there are more than a number of well deserved jokes about car salesman in general but as a whole the owners of dealerships are very generous people when it comes to giving back to the community.
This dealership, however, is truly unique in this aspect and sponsors everything from the local rodeo to high school functions. The potential demise of the automobile manufacturers and subsequently the loss of dealerships will have far reaching ramifications.
All of this is but the latest manifestation of a nation and society in an extreme state of flux. Tragically it is becoming increasingly obvious that a large segment of our population, as manifested in the current structure of the federal government, see business, and the free enterprise system, as a necessary evil that must be restrained for the good of the people rather than the traditional view that it is government that is a necessary evil that must be kept on a very tight leash.
Now, as to the title for today’s post, an explanation. In our society today we are more connected, especially on an international level, than ever before.
Still, people are more lonely than ever. This becomes especially apparent during the holiday season.
The reasons for this are many and could easily fuel months of lively debate. So, instead, I would like to offer a couple of notes of encouragement.
One, if at all possible step from your comfort zone to reach out to those less fortunate or that are alone this holiday season. Ask them out for coffee, take them to dinner, or simply take time from your busy schedule to listen. If you really want to see a world transformed make this a habit rather than a manifestation of the Christmas season.
It is not my intention to offend so please bear with me. I write often about my dearest friend and in so doing may present the impression of being insulated from the world of the lonely.
In fact I am intimately aware of the pain that comes from being alone, the depression that embraces like a deep black silken fog. It is for that reason I acknowledge what a blessing my dearest friend is.
The key word here is blessing. Without going preachy I sincerely ask that during this holiday season you give serious contemplation to Christmas, the meaning and spirit of this holiday, not just the traditions of man and his religion.
It is my sincere hope that each and every one is blessed with a happy and joyous holiday season. Now, a brief explanation of my tardiness.
I got home last evening after nine, visited with my dearest friend, and answered email. This morning, as a result, I started the day about a half hour late.
That left just enough time for prayer, checking the status of bids on Ebay for pre 1940 highway maps, breakfast, and suiting up for the morning ride to work. This morning it was an invigorating 18 degrees!