We welcome adversity on a level we can handle.
When the Asheville area got a foot and a half of snow, our bed and breakfast kept on running and welcomed some unlikely refugees – whole families with small kids and dogs – even with no electricity and heat by fireside.
Last week, when temperatures fell into the single digits and never got above freezing for six days, we were scrambling to thaw pipes at Inn on Main Street, and carrying gallons of water to forgiving guests.
We are so grateful to have guests who understand that nature can deal us hardship. We all grew stronger by learning firsthand that life’s little annoyances pale compared to going without electricity, constant warmth and running water. When the going gets tough, a little compassion and humor go a long way.
Now our own fleeting hardships pale as we watch the heartbreaking tragedy caused by the Haiti earthquake. Fellow humans not only lack food, water and shelter, but they have lost loved ones and everything they own. The despair they must feel is unimaginable.
Our favorite emergency response charity is Oxfam America, which always seems to be first on the scene with the most efficient use of resources and no nationalist agenda. Better yet, their primary mission is to help people learn to feed themselves. A main reason they were first on the scene in Haiti is because they were already there in an ongoing mission to teach job skills, provide clean drinking water and promote self-sufficiency.
If you haven’t done so already, please donate to the disaster relief organization of your choice. If you don’t have a preference, you can donate online at http://oxfamamerica.org/haiti. You can also donate by mobile phone: text OXFAM to 25383 to make a $10 donation to Oxfam’s Haiti Earthquake Response Fund.