The 'BARKING OWL' always has something to say, and like the feathered version, can be either WISE...............or ANNOYING!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Meet Lenny


Who ARE these people anyway? If I were you, I'd go read my intro here and then start from "Zoe" on May 2nd!

Years ago I worked on a farm during summer breaks. There were four daughters and only one son, so they had to hire me. The son's name was Lenny and he must have felt threatened when his dad hired another guy that first summer, because he ragged me about my name more than anybody ever had. And that is saying a lot! It wasn't just my name, at first, because it took me a little while to catch on to the routine and to get in shape, but I worked hard to make sure the name thing was the only thing he could use on me. Then one day I was on the porch and heard one of his sisters, Abigail, call him Leonard with a sing-song teasing voice, just inside the screen door. I saw him flinch and then a sudden look of horror come over him as he realized the full tri fecta: He had been riding me all morning, Abigail liked me, and now I was coming into the kitchen, fully armed. I heard, but because I knew that Abby was even meaner than Lenny, I pretended that I didn't hear anything and made sure the subject was changed by saying something about Abby's outfit. Later, Lenny and I were working alone in the tool shed. The silence, as he could not bring himself to use one of his standard barbs on me, was deafening, so I had to say something. “I would kill,” I said, “to have a name as normal as Leonard.”

It's amazing what one good moment can do for a relationship, and to a life.  I had no idea at the time, but Lenny desperately needed to know how to forgive. What he learned that day from little old me changed his life forever.

Have you ever had such a moment?  Or provided one?  How deep into the soul would such an encounter reach?

(I still get all the free manure I need for my garden from Lenny and his SIX daughter's!)


  1. I like the Lenny story. I think these little moments happen all the time. A small seed of kindness, planted in a barren spot, and one tiny bloom leads to a lush garden.

  2. I love these moments. I used to see my children have them all the time. They fought like cats and dogs but would come to each others' rescue in sometimes the smallest ways. They are all grown now and are spread across the country, but they are still very close.


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