Life here in southern California has been pretty exciting in recent days. This week our little hamlet has been in the news – first for a terrible bus accident that killed eight and injured forty just outside Loma Linda. Lisa and I actually heard the sirens and helicopters bringing the bus crash victims to the hospital. We did not know until the next morning what had happened and people at the hospital reported that it was one of the most horrific accidents in memory.
Now we learn there is a massive manhunt for a former LAPD officer who is on a killing rampage and whose car was spotted at Big Bear Resort, which is also just a few miles from us.
But the big news here is that Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard can’t get along. It seems to be the only thing on the news these days. Thank goodness the soap opera LA Lakers help keep our priorities straight.
This has been an interesting place to live – I would call it a world of contradictions. Here we are in a place known for its healthy lifestyle and world renown hospital and medical school and yet I am alarmed at the number of homeless and destitute. Jesus said the poor we would have always and I need to remember that human suffering is real everywhere – even in ‘Tinseltown’.
There seems to be a ‘stand off’ kind of attitude with people here. According to a co-worker Lisa has gotten to know – people are friendly but have very few friends. There is a sort of guarded reserve with people here and Lisa’s southern hospitality, just like in Pennsylvania, has made a positive impact on her workplace. Recently she invited a co-worker to go to Disneyland with us and she was thrilled and shocked to be invited. People just don’t normally reach out to others like that here. The other day she asked Lisa if they could stay in touch after Lisa returns home. People want to have real friendships but struggle with knowing how. Lisa and I have a heart for these who seem so lonely and shut off from others but who want to have people they can share life with. It is my hunch that this problem is everywhere – not just here in California and I am sad about that.
In our travels Lisa and I have depended on each other in ways we never had to before in our married life. Our hearts break when we see people eating alone and we cannot imagine living our lives without each other or without the friends and family in our lives. In one of the most populated places in America we have discovered so many people living in desperate loneliness.
In four weeks we will head home to our family and friends – a fact we hope to never take for granted.