It’s a sign we all see about in our townships. POSTED or the above about Transgressing. Jack’s favoirite is PRIVATE PROPERTY. ‘Keep away’ was the playground game. You can tell that a transfer of land has been done to someone, a city man perhaps. Afraid of finding a two legged predator on ‘their’ land. It happens a lot around here. Hunting and just exploring is natural to break the restrictive bond of living in the city, in a house with next window neighbors. Freedom from the small lawns and sidewalks.
Property lines are in dispute at times however. After years go by, the barbed wire is tangled and sinking into the ground in places. Just above ground anough to trip you up. The property lines get a little vague and once in a while a neighbor gets disturbed about their rights and taxes. It happens to all of us in some way.
For Jack, it always seems that the neighbors land goes back to the civil war when the present owners great great grandparents received their land for homesteading. Big places. Hundreds of acres in the family and with signs often stating a ‘Century Farm’ They say: ‘ I am special, we are special and you are probably not as special as us’
The way our country has headed with bureaucracy telling us a phrase from Orwell’s Animal Farm. “ you are special, some pigs are more special however” Nothing new really. A side note: the word bureaucracy derives from the French word for ‘desk’
Earlier, when Jack was new to his property, he was walking about the south west part and he came upon another hunter behind a small hill. The hunter got rather irritated and asked Jack what he was doing and Jack replied: “Ahh, we are standing on my property” The man promptly walked over to the south fence, climbed over it and turned about face. Jack extended his hand and said “Let’s start over, may name is Jack and I’m new to this place. Who are you?” The man had the same last name and they chatted a bit about land and fences and somewhat arbitrary property lines. It was a good beginning and there were no posted or private property signs installed on the perimiter by either man. No need really, it is just safety in the hunting season to be aware of people, buildings and livestock that are within range of a shot. Neighbors are to be treasured, not judged. There is a new contingent of new neighbors that build cabins that are the same comfort to them as living in the big city. They are only around in the summer and it’s best to make a good effort to meet them and extend your hand. It makes them feel welcome. A lot of full time neighbors don’t like them. But of course, they are just as worthy as we are. Love always wins.
The same signs of no tresspassing are put up during conversations with known and unknown people. The quest or not of seeking another soul that also desires encouragement and recognition for who they are. There is nothing more perfect than asking someone their name and quickly asking them to tell you about themselves. This is key to relaxing for two ‘strangers’.
A woman that had accidentaly slipped her boot onto her accelerator pedal from the brake pedal, had run into the back fender of Jack’s car. It was in a big parking lot at one of the box stores, 20 miles south.She stuck around and was glad that Jack was not angry with her. “My brakes failed.” Jack promptly said he would ensure the brakes were safe and found a good response at the brake pedal. “Slipping off a pedal happens now and then to everyone”.” He told her that and said, “It’s safe to drive home, how far do you have to go?” Not far she answered. Jack also asked if she was OK to drive.
They exchanged the usual information. She was gentle and Jack told her, “you’re a Christian aren’t you? No one else would have waited for me as you did” It was true. She was delighted that Jack saw her faith. Her insurance eventually took care of the damage of course. She even called Jack later that day and told him her address in case he needed it. She lived only a mile away from that parking lot. The most pleasant accident that Jack had ever had. Both of them learned and they had a conversation, a good one.
Relaxed conditions and genuine curiosity can engender quick approaches to friendships and even shared backgrounds and life experiences. This type of conversation can be easily done in common locations. Places like houses of friends or worship centers. Relax, you don’t have to give a big hug or even shake hands right out of the gate. (unless they are a relative or someone you have completely forgotten that you should remember)
How can we approach this relaxed and surprising interest, genuine interest in another? It’s not easy for those of us that have No Tresspassing posted in our eyes. Fear of revealing ourselves with emotion and reactions to a recent event. The easiest one can be a sermon directed to everyone in the room, everyone. Ask someone by conveying your genuine interest with eye contact. You can do it, trespassing allowed if you desire more of life than a quick how are you doin’. Tell them the truth and the truth will make all of us free. You can do it, it’s pretty good. Jack Gator