I took my daily walk through Sweet Springs Nature Preserve this morning. As I left this wondrous area, there were about 20 young men dressed in sweat pants and shirts, raking, picking up and watering throughout the grounds.
Passing each group, I bid them, “Good morning.” All of these gentlemen responded with a, “Good morning, ma’am,” and stepped aside to let me pass. As I left the preserve and headed up Ramona toward home, I saw a bus with Grizzly Academy painted on its side. What joy to know that these youths were being given, and accepting, a second chance at life by being given a reason for it: hard work and respect! I haven’t been called “ma’am” in longer than I can remember.
Thank you to those who created this program for those who never may have made it through “the system”; to those who dedicate themselves to teaching others how life works; and to those who go through this program, giving of themselves. You all bring the positive to the fore and help keep a magnificent place looking and feeling marvelous, proving that man and nature truly can coexist.