The last thing people likely wanted or needed in the lobby of Moncton City Hall yesterday was a radio person putting a microphone in front of their face, asking why they signed a book of condolences for residents of Newtown, Connecticut.
But there I was, doing just that. And yet again, I was surprised and touched that people were gracious enough to speak to me. They were thoughtful, compassionate. All expressed sentiments of sadness, lingering shock and a sense of helplessness. Writing those thoughts in a book seemed to provide an outlet for those sentiments and a way of letting those suffering in a community far away know that people here cared.
There have been many opportunities this holiday season to demonstrate that caring for community closer to home and people have responded in droves. An hour after leaving city hall, I was at the Moncton Coliseum, watching volunteers with the Food Depot load more than 1800 food boxes into a long line of vehicles to deliver to homes of people less fortunate. The boxes I delivered with my daughter were received with gratitude and grace.
I am proud to be part of this community, for the way it reaches out to people both near and far, no matter the reason or the season.
Happy Holidays to you and yours.