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As of late in the Deep South, and more specifically, on the South Carolina coast, we have experienced weather that is somewhat foreign to us. Over the last three weeks, we have experienced below freezing temperatures along with rain, sleet and snow. That's right, snow...at the beach. I know it's not that big of a deal for those of you who live in parts of the US where you regularly see this kind of weather. Oh, we have short snaps of cold weather, although it not as often as others, however it's the precipitation that messes with us.

When we see a snowflake...do you hear me..."A" snowflake, we tend to lose our minds. But when it comes down heavy for an extended period of time...we are almost crippled. As an Educator, I understand the necessary precautions when it comes to putting children on buses and parents driving on icy roads...and I am okay with the inconvenience of having to make up the school days. What I do not like is the way the ice causes limbs and trees to fall in the yards, on houses, on cars and across roads. I also don't like the power outages. Personally, we were spared the power failure, but many of my friends were not. Some of the friends and colleagues from work lost power and went 5-6 full days without power.

Now that I have set the stage, you might find yourself asking, "Why is all of this on a Mayberry Blog?" As Ernest T. Bass says, "I'm getting to that! I'm getting to that!"

What happened during this time was a great example of Mayberry's hospitality come to town. I saw friends and neighbors working together to remove debris. Young guys helping older folks cut limbs and haul them away. I jumped the fence at my house to help my elder neighbors drag away some heavy limbs. We invited friends to our home who were without power. We met friends out for meals when the roads allowed.

Aunt Bee: "Do unto others..."

We saw families gathering together the homes of those with power. We saw friends staying with friends so they had a place to keep warm. We saw people sharing the food in their freezers, instead of waiting for it to go bad (and not that tough beef like Aunt Bee got from Diamond Jim's). Friends asking other friends over for a hot meal while they waited for the power company.

Andy Taylor: "Why don't you come over to the house and eat with us. Aunt Bee would love to have you."

I heard of one co-worker tell of their family cooking meals together on their gas grill. One told me that they got out the old fashion ice cream churn, and hand-churned a gallon of creamy dessert. (There was plenty of ice for the churning). They played cards by candlelight, read by glow of lanterns, and kept warm by fireplaces. They talked and shared stories...some were the same old tales told many, many times..and there was an occasional new one. They laughed and enjoyed each other's company. We didn't see this as an inconvenience, but as an adventure.

Opie Taylor: "Oh boy! If you stay over, you'll be in my room...and I'll get to sleep on the Ironing Board between two chairs. That's adventure sleeping!"

We stayed in touch with one another, and checked on our family and friends often. We made do with what we had, and those who were more fortunate gave freely to help others. It was a time to reflect on what was important. We did what the good people of Mayberry would have done had they been in the same situation. The situation impacted us all...in many different ways...we gained renewed perspectives...and just like in Mayberry, we learned an important lesson...I'll let Barney tell you about that...

Barney Fife: "Andy's been trying to teach me something every since I've been working for him, and it's this: when you're dealing with people, you'll do much better If you don't go so much by the book, but by the heart."


Have a Mayberry Day,

Keith

a.k.a. - Col. Harvey

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