"Once Upon a Time"
SUNNYSIDE UP MOMENT - MAY 11, 2020
DAY FIFTY-SIX OF THE CORONAVIRUS QUARANTINE FOR US AT STACK 'EM HIGH PANCAKES AND SO FORTH
Anyone who spent any time at all with Mr. Perry is aware of what a fantastic storyteller he was. He had a way of making even his benign experiences worthy of a slowly sipped cup of coffee. Whether he was reminiscing about sparse village life in Greece or round the clock restaurant service in the bowery district of Pittsburgh or carving a path in the sand of the 1960’s Outer Banks, he was painting you a masterpiece. With every broad stroke and every minute detail, he illustrated the journey that led him to the chair he had pulled up next to your booth. And after he walked away, you were either thirsty for more of his stories or eager to go create some of your own.
Either way, an encounter with a well-versed narrator changes you. Quite spontaneously and unwittingly, you are assigned temporary guardianship of someone’s truth. The impact of that moment may be fleeting or monumental. If a story tugged on your heart strings, it deepened your compassion. If it sparked your curiosity, the direction of your course may be altered even ever so slightly. The responsibility granted to you in that moment is to act as a stepping stone for that person’s legacy to find its way forward. You are a vessel of immortality.
Gifted author, Sue Monk Kidd once said, “Stories have to be told or they die, and when they die, we can’t remember who we are or why we’re here.” Especially now, we owe it to ourselves to listen to each other’s stories, tell our own stories and recall the stories of those who have gone before us. Stories give us power and perspective as well as endurance and insight. They allow us to glimpse into the past, make sense of our present and face our future. Most importantly, they remind us that we are all in this together. We always have been, and we always will be.