Tuesday, July 24, 2007

From Canada, With Love

I built a cairn a few weeks ago and one of my fellow garden bloggers, Jodi of bloomingwriter fame, left a comment suggesting that those who'd visited the gardens virtually, send a stone for our cairn. She offered to start it off.

Jodi has the hono(u)r of being the first person to contribute a stone to our cairn. Last Friday, just before we left for the weekend, I received a package from Canada. It took eight days to make its way about 2200 kilometers (1367 miles).

The stone that Jodi chose was gathered from the path down to Scott's Bay near her home in Nova Scotia. It's made of granite and she chose it because it has somewhat of a heart shape. I've placed it on the cairn and it now greets me, the cats, and every other visitor to our gardens as they enter them.

The heart shape is appropriate, Jodi. It symbolizes the ties that we as human beings have on this earth to each other, including yours and mine. They form by various means. Some live next-door, some live next-country, and some live on the other side of the world. Something brings us together in a moment, and we are better people for having met, regardless of the vehicle that transports us.

Many people don't understand these internet relationships we have. And if you've never made a friend this way, it's hard to understand. But once you have, it seems as normal as it was when we were kids and had pen pals in far-off lands. We exchanged letters relating our lives to each other and hoped that someday we could meet in person.

The internet, like the world, can be a scary place and there are precautions to be taken. But at some point, you make the choice to refuse to be as cynical as some and take a chance that those friends you've made in this way are who they say they are.

My life has been enriched beyond description because of the people that live in my computer. I'll never forget the day many years ago when I found myself chatting with a student in Bangladesh - the world suddenly became very small. I've learned so much in this way and it has opened my eyes to new ideas and causes me to look at old ones in a new way. It has made me see that there are an awful lot of kind and caring people out there with good hearts and it inspires me to become more like them.

In my idyllic world, I have this crazy idea that if people bothered to get to know people from other places, whether it be in your own country or around the globe, we would realize that although we live in our own delineated spaces, we are all inhabitants of Planet Earth and this alone ties us together. The internet makes this so much more possible.

World peace via the internet . . . it's got to start somewhere!


Unknown said...

Oh, I'm SO glad that the stone made it to your little acre, Kylee--and in only eight days? That's amazing for Canada Post!
I'm with you on how our lives are enriched by this internet-based gardening community--I was looking through my ever-growing list of blogs and while I'll be unlikely to ever visit India, Australia, Sweden, the Netherlands or good grief, even the good US of A....my life is so much richer for having this community of friends and fellow goutweed-battlers (or insert other pest here) to 'talk' to.

Gina said...

Kylee - what a thoughtful post. This nearly made me cry. THERE IS NO CRYING IN THE GARDEN! And, Jodi is way more awesome that I had originally suspected! Thanks for sharing this with us.

kate said...

This was a beautiful post, Kylee. How true it is that we get to know our virtual friends and are definitely the richer for it.

I like your idyllic world... mine is much the same.

I should send both you and Jodi stones and see who receives it first. Any bets that it is you - as Jodi says, Canada Post is something else.

I saw that you are on Ingrid's list to receive "The Girl in the Cafe" movie. I watched it on the weekend and your post reminded me of it.

Kylee Baumle said...

You know, really, if we all just look at each other as individual human beings I think things really could change...

Kate, I'd love to receive a stone for the cairn from you! Do you have my address? If not, where can I send it? I don't have an e-mail address for you, but you can e-mail me through my profile and then I can e-mail you back with it.

Yes, I got an e-mail from Ingrid that I'm next on the list to receive the movie. :-)

Petunia's Gardener said...

I'm in support of your connections for world peace. You've expressed it so well here. I had been thinking about this too. Once we've connected with someone anywhere in the world, it really makes them feel like neighbors. Doesn't mean we always agree, but we sure don't resolve it with violence and bad will.

Gardens foster great connections, regardless of the language or location. Blogging brings them to your neighborhood. Now how to connect those on opposite sides of an issue (or just by the fact of where they live) in order to build the human connection where it is needed most? Until then, we'll all do our part post by post!

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