I am so very proud of my son. Yesterday he got together with a friend of his from across the street and they gathered up toys, videos and clothes that they could part with and arranged them on a tarp in front of our house. With a little help from Mom, they made some lemonade and got some cups. They set up a train track in the garage. Then they put up the signs: "Hurricane Sale," and "Train Runs $1.00." They stuck a big red construction paper cross on the front gate, and they settled in and waited. The Silly Six Pins game sold for two dollars - that was the big sale for the day. A few neighbors saw the signs and stopped by to drop a few dollars in the can (a Nestle's Quick container with a red cross taped to the front). They took turns watching the front and "checking on the train." They did this for two hours in the middle of their Sunday. No one ever did pay to run the train, and there was still a lot of extra stuff left to sell - no one bought the Teletubbies video, can you believe it? They counted up the money at the end. They had collected ten dollars and eighty-two cents. They put it in the mail to the Red Cross.
I have a friend who lives in Manhattan. He has very fresh memories of human suffering from 9/11. He was in Houston this past week on business. He had an afternoon to himself, so he hailed a cab and drove to the nearest grocery store. He filled the trunk and back seat with food, diapers, toys, and other things he could think of, then told the driver to take him to the Astrodome. When they got there, there was no one to tell them where to go, or what to do, so they got as close as they could. People lined up quickly and politely and when the contents of the cab were exhausted, he got back into the cab and returned to his hotel.
I want to be that proud of my government.