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when $4.00 is the difference between managing a really bad infection and letting it get out of control then Charity has to begin at home

the scared voice tentatively said

"Nan...i have to go into the hospital on Friday to have surgery on my ankle again"

"that wound we thought was healed broke open again" "so i went to the Doc today and he says this time he has to go in and take out the steel plates and pins and scrape the bone to see if it's harboring the infection"

the infection was one of the Enterobacters...a gram negative rod shaped highly antibiotic resistant cousin to MRSA (a gram positive round bacteria)...Lana had had that nosocomial infection after a Cervical Spine surgery and had been hopitalized for 3 months

she asked her mom for the money but she wouldn't give it to her...or some money so her sweet husband Jorge could visit the hospital and pay for gas

so often we can't even imagine how really substandard the finances of a neighbor can be....how they have to go to the Salvation Army in El Cajon to ask for a food package just to have something to eat

you don't know 'cause they won't tell you

i mean she'd bake some cookies or cake and send some over to Bobby and i when they were living on dried beans in the pot for 3 days...how was i to know that these sweet people sent me part of the best of their bakery goods

when they first moved into the beautiful new mobile near me Jorge was working as a long haul trucker...they'd sold a home at a reasonable profit and plunked it down as a down payment on their mobile

2 years later Jorge got sick...he developed Insulin Dependant Diabetes and one of his kidneys failed and his trucking career was over and they were on the skids and had to file bankruptcy

how bad could it get?

BAD

i was already a friend...had coffee with Ms Lana, Jorge and their crafty cat Mikie several times a week

one morning when i went into the mobile for some milk for my coffee i was shocked to see their frig was empty....by this time they were giving succor and a bedroom to a cousin of Jorge's who was also unemployed for a long time and he was living off his credit cards

they ended up not being able to pay for their new furniture...the mortgage fee on the mobile (they only pay the interest) and many times not even the medications or any Doctors visit they needed to go to

so far this isn't an unusual story is it? 1000's of people are in the same boat...but they're not my neighbors

very carefully i entered into the scene....first it was food as i casually would tell Lana about some item i had more of then we would ever eat

"i bought this HUGE pork roast at Cosco in Santee Lana...when i opened the package i found it is already cut in half ...would you and Jorge like the second half?"

"are you sure Nan"? she would say at first "Yep hunny...you'd be doing me a favor if you take it"

then it was

"i've got Granny Smith Apples left over...would you like that for the Pork"?

"i got the best buy on these baking product Lana...you know i won't bake them...they were a bargain so i got them for you"

whenever Lana is stress she likes to bake...and the cookies cakes etc would stream out of her oven into my kitchen because she baked too much...LOL

as time went by it was a new tire a Walmart (she paid me back in payments for that) on La Canada for her car so they could drive to important places...a free Turkey from Albertsons for Thanksgiving because i bought one....extra veggies because we'd stopped at the Farmer's market in Santee....eggs at Hillikers Egg Ranch in Lakeside...cracks at first for baking...just some easy donations to a friend in need ...who had often watched Bobby for me when i needed to get out and been a friend indeed to me

the food donations came out of my kitchen at first...later i began to actually buy food i knew they needed

Lana and Jorge NEVER asked me for anything

i have a Charity begins at home attitude

i give to those closest to me...

it's not because i don't trust the agencies around who do charitable endeavorers

i'd just rather chose who i want to help myself

Comments

David Dodd Jan. 19, 2011 @ 3:48 p.m.

That's the best! You give to those you know really need it, good for you :)

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nan shartel Jan. 19, 2011 @ 3:55 p.m.

u and me have the same attitude about that RFG ;-D

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MsGrant Jan. 19, 2011 @ 4:38 p.m.

Nan, you are the best. We can all learn from you.

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nan shartel Jan. 19, 2011 @ 4:48 p.m.

aaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhh...thx hunnypants...it makes me happy to see Lana less stressed and happy herself

i've been in her boots a time or 2...and had "random acts of kindness" done for me...

just "paying it forward" i guess

i told her today that i couldn't love her and Jorge more if she was a "blood relative" ;-D

~~we all r family aren't we~~

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MsGrant Jan. 19, 2011 @ 6:18 p.m.

Yep! I remember one time when I was a wee litle thing living in Pacific Beach and this cute boy lived in the apartment building next to me. He worked at this fabulous bakery that made cinnamon rolls. He started at three in the morning, made rolls until about nine, then made skateboard videos and endorsed clothing lines. One time I went to my back door, and there was a bag of those suburb rolls with a little love note. We had a brief fling, one resulting in us sneaking into the hot tub of the condos next to my place, and turning on what turned out to be copper plumbing that the owners never used and it turned my hair green!! I woke up in the morning and looked at my green nails and went "oh no!"! Sure enough, one-half of my head of hair was green. I will not tell you which half ;)

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nan shartel Jan. 19, 2011 @ 8:39 p.m.

hahahahahahahaha...Grantie ur my kind of woman...and teenager 2....i hope u kissed that kid til his eyes rolled back!!! ;-D

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bohemianopus Jan. 20, 2011 @ 7:54 a.m.

Nan--you are simply maaahvelous, dalink! PLEASE let me know if you need more help for Lana and Jorge. I'll be right there with some victuals (of course none that I cooked myself--that would be mean!).

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quillpena Jan. 22, 2011 @ 3:18 a.m.

You're beautiful and wonderful, nan, on the outside and on the inside too ... you know, where it's all squishy and icky. Anyone who can count you as a friend is very blessed indeed. Peace out, girl!

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nan shartel Jan. 23, 2011 @ 2:29 p.m.

mmwwwaaaahhhhhhhhhh...big squishy kisses to u Quill man!!!

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