Telling Stories

St. Patrick Parade in Ireland, shared by my friend Dave.

My mom loved looking at Becky’s iPad.

That’s because whenever Becky visited she showed her pictures of animals in far away places.

I believe that we are given a chance to share the world with each other.

Some of us travel just a few miles away from home, yet can share the stories of our farms, the ball diamonds where the kids play, the creeks where the bullfrogs croak and the tall grasses up on the hill and you can close your eyes and imagine yourself there.  You know the old timer that takes you on a trip back to 1954 and the race track where his daddy first took him to the races.  You can smell the tires and the gas as the cars run the track, just in the way he tells the story.  You remember Aunt Ruth laughing so hard she cried as she told the tale of the visiting preacher when he came to visit and her toddler tinkled on his shoes – and she had never even left her living room.

Or you read the travel blogs online.

People like Jody Halsted who lives and breathes Ireland Travel.  Then there’s Sheila Scarborough – good Lord, this woman is the energizer bunny of travel blogging and writes Sheila’s Guide to the Good Stuff, for starters.  Both of these women are consummate story tellers and you’ll want to see the world with them. If you’re a traveler, start with a small step. Go the Rotary and tell your story. Or set up a short program at the library. Believe me, people want to know your stories!

Buy One Product Local – toilet paper promotion.

You too have a story to tell, whether it’s the one in your own back yard – or about a trip across the world.  Whatever it is, please share the world with us.  We want to hear what you see.

Bring your friends together, and talk about the cool things you’ve seen.

Dream about the future with them. Imagine what your town could look like. Those are great stories too.

Hampton, Iowa decided they wanted to participate in Shop Local, all year long.

So they started telling stories. Everywhere. Because they chose to promote buying your toilet paper locally. They had numbers (it’s amazing how much money leaves the town just on toilet paper). They had stores, because many, many retailers participated. The hardware store, the grocery stores, the speciality shops, the restaurants – there were so many opportunities to talk about toilet paper. What these stories did was share how much fun shopping locally can be! And who doesn’t need toilet paper?

Stories are powerful things, and I know that as Becky travels she still shares her pictures with me now.  Mom’s no longer here, but I sit on my front porch and look on my phone (Becky texts them to me now) and pretend that mom sits next to me and sees them too.  If I never sit foot in the places she goes, I’ll still know that I’ve been there.