Monday Morning Musings

Posted on July 6, 2020 under Monday Morning Musings with one comment

 

A stroll down The Main

 

“The only constant in life is change.” Heraclitus

The Greek philosopher, Heraclitus was born in 540 B.C. I’m not sure what was going on back then that caused him to coin this well-known phrase, but it has stood the test of time.

Is it only me or is the pace of change happening at warp speed? Maybe it was always thus if you believe the words of the Greek philosopher. Change is inevitable and normal, but it is the speed of change that has my head spinning.

Even before the pandemic hit us, the face of business had been in transition for some time. The small mom and pop stores of yesteryear had been, by and large, swept away by a current of big box stores and online shopping. It’s hard to stop a tsunami once it starts. Small business, the heart and soul of small-town Canada for centuries is now under threat of extinction.

Covid-19 has brought out the best in people. Those of us forced to self-isolate for 14 days were inundated with acts of kindness from family, friends, and in some cases, complete strangers. Many local businesses adapted their way of doing business by offering their services online, with delivery and pickup as options when entering their premises was not allowed.

While more and more people relied on the goodwill of others, many took this opportunity while hunkered down, to think about their lifestyle and the way they buy and consume goods and services. Many of us realized that we could do quite well with less. We baked like there was no tomorrow and garden centers experienced explosive sales as many people decided that it was time to start growing their own food. The notion of food security has been brought under the bright lights.

In our community, we are blessed with a farmer’s market and within days or weeks, a sparkling new Farmer’s Market building will open its doors. It is obvious that we crave locally grown vegetables and fruits. We feel secure knowing that these items were grown locally and not transported for thousands of kilometers on a truck. In some cases, we might pay a bit more to get these products, but we are smart enough to realize that there’s a difference between cost and value.

More and more people are reassessing their shopping habits. There is no way to stop the juggernauts like Amazon and Walmart to name but a few. There is a whole generation of people who have grown up with online shopping and big box stores and these entities aren’t going away any time soon.

How are small communities going to survive when old business models no longer work? Many would suggest that businesses must adapt or die, the “survival of the fittest”. I don’t claim to have the answers, but I still believe that there is a place in 2020 for shopping locally whenever possible. I’m not suggesting that we close our county borders and insulate ourselves but maybe we need to consider regional economic bubbles where people are encouraged to shop locally. It is incumbent on businesses to give people a reason to spend their hard earn dollars supporting the local economy.

What will our communities look like in 25 years if we abandon the small businesses who support local charities, sports teams and the arts community?  No one knows who will be left standing when the dust settles but make no mistake there are going to be a lot of casualties.

The winds of change are howling. We might consider embracing change as an opportunity for growth and renewal.

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I must admit that there are times when I wish we could go back to a simpler time when many activities happened organically without the need for large outlays of cash. Kids lived in the great outdoors and manufactured their own games, playing a pickup game of ball or building forts. Adults bought their groceries at their local Coop or “Hometown Proud” IGA where you knew the names of all the staff. Sadly, those days are long gone.

“Give me the simple life, I need the simple life,

Don’t want to worry ‘bout tomorrow,

Live everyday completely, love for the joy of loving,

Then I will be happy.”

Simple Life – Valdy             

Have a great week.

P.S. If you are wondering what was the point of this post, I’m not even sure myself! After all, it is a confusing time and I confuse easily!!!

 

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Comments

One Response to Monday Morning Musings

  1. Louise Dineen says:

    OMG – déjà vu! Main Street doesn’t seem to have changed in __ years!
    ‘Those were the days, my friends…’

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