I've been thinking about the UMD student found frozen on the steps of a neighbor's house this past weekend. I know I'm not the only parent who is disturbed and wondering how this could have happened.
When I was growing up in Northern MN we always made sure a friend made it in the door before driving away. It was a precautionary action just as habitual as keeping a sleeping bag in your car, along with a coffee can full of survival supplies.
I carried on with the habit with my own kids. They sometimes chided me for doing so, but I just couldn't stop myself.
Perhaps we haven't taught our next generation to look out for each other in that way. It's looking as though each progressive generation has a more casual acceptance of an easier lifestyle. Previous generations could still remember a lifestyle that insisted that they look out for each other because they needed each other to survive.
We've been stuck in sub-zero temperatures here for many days. But it doesn't seem to stop any of us from going about our business as usual. As I drove by the house of my neighbor who lives alone yesterday, I noticed there were no fresh tire tracks on her driveway. I stopped at the next stop sign and called her number. She was fine, and happy to chat with me for a few minutes as I continued to drive into town. She declined my offer to pick up any groceries for her at the store. I just felt better knowing she was 'safely inside'.