The Literary Corner: Renegade Writer’s Guild

Published 10:26 pm Thursday, February 9, 2023

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By Linda H. Barnette

Following John’s death, I have been astounded by the kindness of so many people.

For example, last week I was curious as to why my car was not starting immediately when I pushed the button but seemed to hesitate.  So after going for groceries on Saturday, I decided to stop by Advance Auto Parts and get the battery tested.  I explained my recent widowhood to the gentleman who checked the battery and said it was still ok but weak. After hearing that, I decided to go on and get a new battery installed. When I paid, the man said, “We are here to take care of you, mam.” What a great example of the kindness of a stranger!!

I have also been thankful for both new and old friends who have brought food to the house, taken me to a restaurant for lunch or dinner or driven me to an appointment. The same goes for several members of my family who have been most helpful.

Then there are those anonymous folks who have rolled my trash cans to and from the street, and have put my newspaper close to the garage door.  What very nice neighbors I have and am so thankful for them. There is one neighbor couple who take care of many things, were so helpful with John, and who I can call anytime day or night if something happens and I need help. Thank God for these folks. And those folks who talk to me even on Facebook, when I have a situation that needs to be discussed.

Just today my neighbor and I went to Ketchie Creek for lunch and to run a couple of errands. When I got home, I realized that my special heart necklace, which was a gift from John, was not around my neck. As I sat down to send a message to Ketchie Creek, the owner had already written to me saying that a customer found my necklace and turned it in! The necklace is not valuable in a monetary sense, but to me it is irreplaceable!!

The point of this article is that there are many kind people around, people who walk the walk. I have learned that I need to be better at kindness also!!


By:  E. Bishop

     Small businesses, it seems, are not for the faint of heart.  Eighteen to twenty percent fail within the first two years of opening and fifty percent after five years.  I’ve read that reasons for this are lack of capital/research, lack of management experience, unsuccessful marketing strategies, bad location, growing too quickly, inflation, supply chain disruptions, labor shortages, etc.  This paints a bleak picture.

     Despite all the odds stacked against them, our friends Shari and Rex at “The Artist Market on Main,” had what it took to run a small business in a small town even in the year of the pandemic.  They did the right planning and marketing, had a great location for foot traffic, promoted artists not only from Mocksville but surrounding areas and held classes for the crafty and not so crafty (like myself).  It was a great place to browse and maybe buy something extra special for someone.  Unfortunately, due to circumstances beyond their control, the shop is now closed, and Mocksville has lost a great asset to downtown.

     In recent years, local shops have made a comeback; slowly, but surely the town is improving with new businesses, restaurants, and parks. With the right planning, community environment, and support system, small businesses can find success.  Mocksville has that small town feel but yet is progressive enough that people want to move here for that quaintness, lower taxes, good schools and low crime rate.  It’s a great place to raise a family.  I’ve learned it’s also one of 74 towns in North Carolina and one of more than 3,000 in the nation to receive the Tree City USA recognition.  “Main Street Community” describes our town as well.

     Let’s keep that sense of community going as we say farewell to Shari and Rex wishing them the best in the next phase of their lives.  Their artistic influence, friendliness, promotion of veterans and passion for their business was an inspiration for us all.  Shop local.