“Are you done with the morning?” the occupant asked.
“Yes, we are,” I replied. “But would you like to get out and take a tour?”
“Well, I already had one,” she said a bit sheepishly. “I came yesterday and walked the grounds when no one was here. I hope that was okay. You see, I am a Navy Veteran, a nurse from 1962-1966, and I live in California and have been following your progress on Facebook almost since you started here.”
It’s a small world went through my mind.
“I am originally from around here, and I come back every so often to see my friend, Cynthia. I wanted to try one more time to meet you before I leave today on the train back. Is that the guy who works on the windows?” she asked pointing over at David.
“Yes, he is the window man,” I said, and called David over.
And she opened the door and got out.
“Would you still like to walk around for a minute or two?” I asked. “See the inside of the house?”
And so, that was the start of our chance meeting with Ginny (Virginia) Cline and her life-long friend Cynthia.
Ginny had done a lot in her lifetime. But over half a century later she was watching the progress of our Center for female Veterans all the way from northern California – the gardens taking shape and work starting back up on the house. The Center and its mission had struck a chord. We showed them more of the gardens and walked them through the house and then to their car. From inside, Ginny asked if we would plant a yellow rose for her on the grounds and gave me money to cover buying a rose or two.
“Of course,” I said. “You have toured the gardens, where would you like it to be planted?” I asked.
“I don’t know, roses love sun. Pick a spot.”
And then they were gone.
She said she would be back in a coupe of years. The rose will be waiting to greet her.
ROBERT SANDS, CEO