Wednesday, July 17, 2024

Oh, the year we had

Christmas means many things. One of them is hope. The possibility that, despite the setbacks, good things can come of it all.
We are all very familiar with the not-so-good things that happen in our world, the disagreements and arguments. The minor disappointments, the major tragedies. Some very disturbing events on the world stage. They are always with us.
Christmas gives us an opportunity to change the channel for a moment and focus on the sources of joy we have experienced over the past year. The small blessings. Something you did well. Something nice someone said to you. The good feeling you had when you said something nice to someone else.
Across the community, there have been many good things. Something Pontiac people do very well is volunteer to help make good things happen. Coaching a sports team, producing a play, raising funds for good causes, helping out at community events – there is an abundance of examples.
Many enjoyable moments of creative expression – artworks that adorn our local gallery and various restaurants, evenings of musical and theatrical performances at local venues. People who step up to help out a local service club, sit on the board of an organization or run for election to a municipal council. The awards earned, the trophies won, the expressions of gratitude for a job well done. Announcements of births, graduations and marriages.
It’s all very close to home, and the stuff community newspapers are made of. As reporters, we have the privilege of a front row seat at so much of what is good about the Pontiac, as we attempt to cover as many community events as possible and squeeze as much of it into our little newspaper as we can.
On the other end of the spectrum are the extraordinary images taken by the Webb telescope, peering not only far out into space, but effectively back in time, giving us glimpses of how distant stars and galaxies looked millions of years ago, as it has taken that long for the light they emitted back then to reach us now.
On one hand, these images suggest we must be terribly insignificant in the grand scheme of things, mere grains of sand on a vast beach that stretches down the coast and well out of view. On the other, despite the odds, it appears ours may be the only planet within the known universe that supports life, something precious and enormously significant.
So, here we are. Together. Floating through space on this little planet, possibly alone. But we have each other. We have life. The question is what are we going to do with this extraordinary opportunity.
Because, just as surely as humans make not-so-good things happen, we are also capable of doing the opposite. Among many things, Christmas reminds us that the option is always present to appreciate the people around us and restore our hope that good things are possible.
As 2023 comes to a close, and with it this newspaper’s 140th anniversary, we want to convey to all our readers, the people about whom we write stories, and the advertisers who make all of this possible, our deepest gratitude and our wishes for a peaceful and joyful Christmas.

Dave Moore, Kathy Hynes, Janey Duff MacDougall, Breanna Adams, Liz Draper, Ashley Draper Chevalier, Crystal Metcalfe, Vickie Crawford, Camilla Faragalli, Sophie Kuijper Dickson and Charles Dickson


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