It Only Takes One Person
0 comment Sunday, August 31, 2014 |
Rosa Parks in the US is credited for starting the civil disobedience movement during the 1960's. At the time, African-Americans were supposed to sit at the back of the bus, but one day, a middle-aged, dimunitive Rosa sat at the front and refused to move. Her subsequent harassment and arrest was the spearhead of the whole of the civil rights protests.
And why did she do it? "I was tired" she answered with a small smile.
It's strange how one small action can create huge change - sometimes in directions you never imagine, for good or for ill. Rosa never envisioned herself as the heroine of an age - as a matter of fact, at the time what she was doing was willfully breaking the law. But the effect of one action can snowball, and before you know it....well, plant one acorn and it can become a forest.
I didn't really think about this project in any other terms than "My son is bored and I'm tired, I need to do something." I wasn't thinking about changing the world or educating the public or touching other people in any way. Yet I've received seeds and trees and volunteer help from people I've never met before, and maybe never will - from all over the UK, Ireland, and even some mentions in blogs in the US. I've petitioned for funding, inspired other groups to raise more awareness, and generally just shouted for as loudly as I could, for as long as I could.
Today, I attended a meeting with the Parks group of Salisbury Council; the last thing I'd ever consider doing. We discussed the creation of a community garden/orchard space near where I live. The land is free and there's definitely enthusiasm from their part, but they need to see more enthusiasm from the community - I'm already spreading the word and the enthusiasm they receive might surprise them! This project is in its early stages but is already looking as if it will gather momentum. Let's just see whether we can keep on with it.
I never expected any of this; not everything goes completely to plan, there are setbacks and difficulties and having to be extremely flexible. Enthusiasm is important, and not giving up. It requires not taking "Well, nobody would want that!" as a blanket statement and instead asking "Well, what about you, personally, then? If it's yes, sign up, what have you got to lose?"
I do not have a massive horticultural education, or loads of money or, it must be said, energy. I'm not gifted with more brains than average, or friends in high places. I'm just one person who had an idea, and decided it was worth trying to bring it to the attention of others - not because I'm a grand visionary, but because I'm tired, and frustrated, and just pissed off enough to set the ball in motion if no one else will because sometimes, just like the "coloured to the back", Some Laws Are Really, REALLY Dumb.
I didn't do anything special - I just stood up, and walked in, and gave the pitch. I'll drum up the enthusiasm and do what I can to get the ball rolling - and acknowledge when the ball is rolling without me, and can therefore stop kicking the damn thing.
It only takes one person, really.
Someone just like you.

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