Rarely does a week go by that I don't consciously thank God for Stokesdale. It's a treat just to live here.
Every time I go into the Bi-Rite grocery store, I see someone I know. The people who work there are personal friends, and invariably I find other customers to talk to.
And at the post office, no one ever has to wait in line. If there is a line, I probably recognize some of the people in it.
People care about one another. When a family has a hard time, the community is there to help out.
At Parker's, they know what beverage I have with my breakfast. At Southern Hardware, I know the owner, and he remembers what kind of chainsaw I have. At Snatchers, they repair my car honestly, stand by their work, and help me find a good deal on tires.
The Christmas Parade is a parade of friends. Kids we know wave from floats of churches, clubs, schools and businesses we know.
The fire chief helps the elementary school coordinate with our church, so that we can help raise funds for a school field trip.
A Stokesdale traffic jam has six cars in it.
The season opening of Humphrey's Ridge Restaurant is like a family reunion. Everyone is excited that the weather is warming up and we can soon swim in the lake.
We are close to Greensboro, Winston-Salem, the airport, Belew's Lake. We are outside the frenzy of city life, and just a few miles from real wilderness. The Blue Ridge Parkway is about an hour away. I can see Hanging Rock Mountain from my street. This is a beautiful part of the country.
Somehow God has smiled upon us, allowing us to live in a small place with a big heart, where we can experience the beauty of his creation.