Yesterday afternoon my good friend, Flo, called me. She had a story to share and gave me permission to share it with you. Let’s see if I can tell Flo’s story properly.
First, let me tell you a little about Flo. She’s an angel. That’s not just my opinion, several people I know feel the same way. Flo is a retired hospice nurse who brings loving attention to everything she does. She is, in popular parlance, “mindful.”
Recently Flo spent several weeks providing her particular brand of expertise to support mutual friends of ours in Tennessee, and currently she’s helping out at her daughter’s home in South Carolina. An angel.
After dropping one of her granddaughters off at school on Thursday morning, Flo came to an intersection. She could either turn right and go back to her daughter’s home where she’d be by herself until the end of the school day, or left, to explore unknown territory. She turned left onto Mason Boro Loop Road and then onto the Carolina Beach Highway that took her into the town of Kure Beach.
Flo said that finding the town, located on Pleasure Beach, North Carolina, felt like discovering the real America. She parked for free and walked through the quaint town, stopping for lunch at the Kure Beach Cafe where she had a view of the waves meeting the beach, taking sand out and depositing sand in its place.
After lunch, Flo strolled out on the pier, visiting with fishermen and enjoying the mild weather. I imagine gulls wheeling nearby, even though Flo didn’t mention them. Maybe even a few pelicans were present, diving to pluck a fat fish from the water. I do love pelicans.
Flo is always interested in people, and when I say she visited with the fishermen I mean she likely had full blown conversations. The first one she encountered had a couple of fishing poles with lines dangling in the water. They spoke about his luck so far that day before she moved on to another fisherman a bit farther down the pier.
This man was watching over six poles, three on the south side of the pier and three on the north side. Flo asked him why he’d split his equipment up rather than just having it all on one side. He said the fish migrate—something Flo wasn’t aware of, and that in the spring when fish are moving north, the best fishing is on the southerly side of the pier. In the fall, it’s best on the northerly side.
She told me, “I’m in my sixties and I learned something brand new. I had no idea that fish migrated.”
(I deduced that since the man had poles on both sides, he was hedging his bets.)
Leaving the pier to walk on the beach, Flo encountered a man about her age who was looking for shells.
“I’m looking for sea glass,” she told him. He had no idea what that was. She explained how glass thrown overboard or washed out to sea becomes weathered and sculpted over time by the waves, the sun, and the sand, to transform into treasures for people to discover on the beach.
Flo was delighted with the way her day had gone. She both learned something new and taught someone something new. Isn’t it lovely to know that even in our sixties we can still do both?
We should all be more like Flo.