“Hello, I’m Jose”…REALLY???

I really enjoyed this post

Culture Monk

chicago 3

By Kenneth Justice

~ A few mornings ago as I sat outside the train station waiting to depart for my weekend in Chicago a young man walked directly over to me and put his hand out to shake, “Hello, my name is Jose. Could you tell me if this is the train to Chicago?” he said

I’ve never been asked to shake hands with a stranger who was asking me for travel information but I obliged him. “Is this your first time going to Chicago I asked?

No, I’ve just never taken the train there and I’m really excited!” he said, “I’m meeting up with my cousin who is on holiday from Spain and my sister who goes to college in Wisconsin. We’re going to have a blast at all the St. Patrick’s Dayfestivities!”

Jose is only in his early 20’s but is…

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increased contact with friends and family, update

Well, I haven’t pulled this goal off as closely as I had hoped, but I am making improvements.  The goal was to daily make a contact with a friend or family member that I would not make “automatically.” In other words to push myself to pay more attention to relationships.  Planning an outing to a play with the group of folks who I’ve been attending plays with for several years does not count, planning an evening of playing boche ball or croquet in the park (once we actually have warm weather!) will because that’s not something I’m used to doing.  Visiting an aunt or uncle when I’m home visiting my folks doesn’t count, sending them a letter does.

Even though the execution hasn’t been perfect, having this as a goal is a really good reminder.  I am trying to stay conscious of activities and life events that may interest friends at a distance, and sending them quick emails.  For example, several things that happened to me yesterday reminded me of my 20s, and I sent emails to friends from those days saying “hey, remember!”  I’ve organized a couple of group outings that have included friends who did not previously know each other.  I have sent one note to an elderly aunt, but have been carrying cards around in my bag for several weeks that I mean to send to other elderly relatives.  (This is an area I really do want to put more attention to, especially as there have been several family deaths over the past year, and several other family members in poor health.)

I’d like to become more conscious about doing this daily, but right now I feel ok about the progress.

9 out of 52 (or maybe only 8 1/2?): Future workshop, step one

Yesterday I attended a workshop at a local gardening company.  In late winter, this company runs a great series workshops on a range of gardening related topics – anything from garden design to recently developed, hip, new perennial for the year to how to grow grapes in the north.

I’ve several ideas for workshops that I’d like to teach in this series, but have never gotten further than that.  I haven’t known who to contact, and, as I have been in school over the past couple of years, I haven’t have the extra time to plan a workshop.  Yesterday, I realized I could probably get the information I needed from the woman who was checking people in  It turned out she’s the staff person who plans the series, and she said that every year she is looking for new ideas for workshops.   So I got her email address, and learned when she starts to recruit ideas for next year.

Although I have not yet written a proposal or emailed her (which is shy I’m saying this is only a hald step at this point), I feel like I’ve gotten over a hurdle. I now know how to proceed.