In the last week or so I have read with sadness the back and forth between two individuals who once seemed to be in agreement. Unfortunately, in our very small town sides had been taken. I looked over the news stories and the comments and could not help but ask, "how did this get so far from where it was intended?" "when had the shared vision become so myopic that it no longer bore any resemblance to what it was meant to be?" Now, in this small place businesses come and go. Some thrive and some never seem to catch on. I am always excited when I see a grand opening sign and disappointed to see the closing up shop banner. It is the ebb and flow of our community and we have all come to expect it. So, when I saw yet another business, which had started with so much hope and passion was passing away and all that passion that had been poured into it's success was now bitterly expressed in print, I was saddened.
I cannot help but ask if this really had to be handled this way. I am not looking to lay blame. No, I am just amazed to see that two people, who had shared a plan to make each of them more profitable, had turned into a finger pointing, drag out, knock out fight. I understand the dream of owning your own business and the allure of following your heart. It is part of what makes this life an adventure. I had been to this business and enjoyed it. I never invited others to join me there. I never recommended it to anyone. I am guilty of running off to a chain restaurant instead of dropping by the locally owned business. I forgot it was there. I got busy and into another routine. Apparently I am not alone in that respect. I lost sight of the braveness involved in putting your reputation and financial future on the line in order to live out your dreams.
I cannot go back and give my business to that now shuttered place. I cannot reach out and thank that independently minded individual for taking a chance on our town. Or welcome them into our business community. I failed them. There is a lesson to be learned here for all of us. In this small town that is suddenly being discovered by so many big franchises, we also need to share our purchasing power with those willing to step out on a wing and a prayer and take the leap of faith to place their name on their dreams.
I am sure there is enough disappointment to go around in this matter. It has been ladled out generously to all that care to fill their cup. I ask all of us to set that poisonous concoction down. There is nothing good to come from the kind of ire and blaming that has been flowing out of this sad situation. Please step back and remember how this all started. A seemingly lovely young woman, whom I do not know personally, had a dream. She planned and designed how it would look and what it would do. She made up menus and decor choices. She created a wonderful place for us to come and eat and feel welcomed.
And a gentleman, whom I have also never met, who decided to help her. He, by some accounts made allowances and gave generously to help make the endeavor take off. Everyone was hopeful. It must have been a heady time. And then, things changed. I have no idea how it fell apart, nor do I care to. There was the death of a dream and many gathered willing to preform the autopsy. Some had experience to give their opinion and others just threw blame. While mourning her sudden loss, the dreamer spoke out. She seemed to feel that her child was being stolen away from her. Slipping out of her grasp. In her mixture of heartache and hurt she moaned at the loss. You could see how that would happen. She did not want to watch helplessly as the thing she created died. She attempted CPR to no avail. And that kind gentleman, well he had made his own investment and he felt that this dream was on life support and so he pulled the plug.
Does that make him wrong? I think not. Neither of these individuals wished for things to turn out this way. I am sure it was a hard to face the harsh truth of the matter. What I am trying to express, is that there may be no bad guy. No one at fault. And that marvelous dream may just be suspended. More of a coma than a outright death. I sincerely hope that that dreamer steps out once more and allows us another chance to share in her vision. I also hope that that gentleman whom first saw a promising business will continue to reach out to help others. To everyone else watching from the sidelines, take a few moments to see the other's point of view. Spend more of your time and dollars locally. If we invest in our dreamers we can make a successful reality for us all.