Recently, I’ve been searching for something…something to counter what feels like disillusionment. Every time I turn on the television I see nothing but mindless Zombies consuming and killing each other—and I’m not talking about the series, The Walking Dead, either.
Turn on the television, and it seems we live in a society propelled by only two primal impulses, fight or flight—both of which are acceptable responses, but both of which are extreme and should be limited. Isn’t there more to us than that? Where’s the assessment of a situation? Where are the reasoning abilities that separate us from the animals? I guess I just expected more. I expected better.
However, over the last few months, I’ve noticed a pattern emerging along the edges of my favorite dog-walking trail around the Daybreak lake. It started with an abandoned infant’s shoe. The single bootie was placed on a path light, so presumably, the guardian of the single-shoed baby could easily notice it.
My first thought was ‘oh, how nice’—recalling the moments when my kids were little and returning home to realize that baby LoLo was wearing only one shoe and one sock, not two like she was when we left that morning—same goes for baby Nate and his Nike tikes.
It was a nice gesture of someone to aid the missing shoe to be found, and it wasn’t the last time I noticed something like this. It happens quite a lot when one starts noticing it. It got me thinking, either there’s a ridiculous amount of one-legged infants in the area, or perhaps humanity isn’t entirely lost after all!
I wanted to test out this theory. My thought was that if humanity were in the crapper, no one would take the time to turn in a dropped twenty-dollar bill, they’d just take it and move on—probably to Starbucks to treat a friend or two to a Grande Caramel Macchiato. So, I tried it out.
Every once while at a McDonald’s or moving down the isles of Harmon’s grocery store, or at a weird little bowling alley in Moab, I’ll stop and ask if the store has a lost and found—you know, a designated spot where lost items are turned in by strangers to be kept safe until the rightful owner returns for them? And surprisingly, every single place has one—mostly in the form of a cardboard box and mostly filled with sunglasses. I’ve even seen several boxes containing cash! Untraceable, valuable cash—that and sunglasses—loads and loads of sunglasses.
What this means is either the Ray-Ban Sunglasses Cartel has been swiping Wayfarers from heads or Aviators off table tops of unsuspecting patrons to push merchandise, or that humanity still exists! Why?
Because people turn in things that don’t belong to them rather than just throwing the items away or tucking them into a coat pocket and stealing away into the night—not to say that some things aren’t taken—but those cardboard boxes are always full, and that tells me something! It screams that people are generally, naturally good. Maybe we’re just out of practice when it comes to bigger issues? In any case, it makes me feel better.
So, I walk my path, the one that winds around a manmade lake and I see that every ounce of patience, hope, and dignity hasn’t been drained. I notice sandals placed on a park bench, or a jacket looped over a tree branch and my faith in humanity is restored.
(These are my latest finds while on my walk)