I live in one of the smallest states, and yet we somehow manage to cram 351 towns and cities into it. I’m no spring chicken, and I still see on the news or hear mention of some little town and say, “Really? That’s in Massachusetts? Never heard of it.” Then, there is the lengthy roster of towns that residents of the state have heard of, but haven’t the slightest idea where they are.
Dib was en route to one such place — Billerica — when she called me on the phone earlier today. In my mind, Billerica was one of the less-reputable places on the outskirts of Boston to the south. I looked it up on a map just now. I wasn’t even close. Billerica, as it turns out, is just past Pinehurst.
Never heard of Pinehurst.
So, there was Dib, off to parts unknown, making her rounds near and far as a sales rep for high-end eye wear. Traffic was backed up due to an accident. She would be late. Yet, to be chatting with her, you’d think she was talking from the nail salon. Dib is a shining example of the fact that positivity is a choice.
When she talks about her appointments, it is in terms of who and not where. She doesn’t tell me the name of some optometry shop or store. Dib sees people. At the moment, she was on the way to see Francine. “I just love Francine!” she said, in a way that made me want to snuggle up with whoever Francine was. “I’m bringing her the most beautiful, purple hydrangea. She is pure heaven — the most ordinary, extraordinary person you could ever meet.”
Until today, I’d never heard of Pinehurst, Massachusetts. Until today, I never knew quite where Billerica was located. And until today, I had never heard anyone described as “ordinary, extraordinary” — and with such natural sincerity.
What a compliment: to be known to others as both ordinary and extraordinary!
Common and uncommon.
Approachable and astonishing.
Just a regular person — and yet remarkable at the same time.
Somewhere in a small state, in a tiny town, is a woman named Francine who is living her life in such a way as to have earned the honor, and without even knowing it.