Hello Monroe!

This week’s column features a special focus on acts of kindness and appreciation. We can always use more positive stories in our lives. They’re good for your blood pressure!

Welcome to Monroe

Four new “Welcome to Monroe Est. 1818” signs are in place along select town limits! Thank you to the kind “fans of Monroe” who generously donated the signs to the town. When you’re out and about for a drive, see if you can’t find all four … they certainly spruce up the roadside with clean class.

Photo attached taken by Ashlie Stubbs

Kind encounters

During what are stressful times for many, myself included, it is so nice to be reminded that there are many, many kind individuals still out and about, spreading cheer.

I recently had two such encounters at the Swan Lake gas station. One gentlemen was filling up his truck on an early, beautiful summer morning. As I proceeded to park on the opposite side of the pumps and fill my car, he struck up a conversation with me about the weather and shared that he’d just finished planting corn in Searsport. He commented that the sounds of the birds, the smell of the dirt, and the blue sky up above him brought such peace to him that morning. We both agreed there are more of those moments of peace needed in the world today. As he finished pumping his gas and got ready to leave, he smiled, wished me a good day, and said it was nice chatting. A complete stranger — but he was right, it was nice to chat and be friendly.

My other encounter at Swan Lake gas wasn’t as interactive, but the gesture will be remembered nonetheless. I had Ethan’s truck and was busy filling the gas can for the lawn mower with fuel. A gentleman had pulled in behind me, waiting for the pumps, and I could see he was talking on his phone. As I finished filling the gas can and began lifting it back up into the bed of the truck, I was surprised to see the man jump out of his seat and ask if he could help me. By that point, the can was already sitting on the tailgate, but I smiled and thanked him anyway. Some could turn that into an accusation of me being a woman and not having the strength or coordination to capably load the can myself, and I’ll admit that thought briefly crossed my mind; however, I drove away thinking instead, what a kind individual to even make the motion to offer his assistance.

The last kind encounter I want to share with you came through as a text message from my mother-in-law. While working at the Brooks Town Office recently, she received a bag of lupine seed from Republican Journal reader Joyce Halpin. Joyce had read a previous column of mine where I shared that lupine was my favorite flower, and she brought in the seed for me! Joyce, thank you so much. I look forward to spreading them, and when they hopefully take root and bloom, I can think of you and smile, remembering your kind gesture.

From the selectmen

The Monroe Board of Selectmen would like to thank the hardworking town clerk and ballot clerks for all the normal work they performed, as well as all the extra steps and measures that COVID-19 brought to the recent Election Day at the Town Hall. They would also like to extend appreciation to the voting public for being so understanding and patient that day.

Special thank you is being issued to Lynda Oliver for her late evening run to the town Free Shop to help with an urgent situation. Lynda is a community member who goes above and beyond, for sure.

Have a great week!