Everyplace Tom and I go, we try to leave it a little better off than we found it. This is especially true of the places we work. Tom and I left Pipe Spring on October 1, but I left behind some pieces of myself. We made some new friends, and I will keep pieces of them with me as we travel. They will hold pieces of me in their hearts (I hope). I also left behind some things that I made.
I knitted a flax table runner. Emmeline Winsor, for whom the Fort at Pipe Spring is named, grew her own flax for knitting. While I was at Pipe Spring I spun some flax. Then I knitted what was supposed to be a curtain, but ended up as a table runner. I donated it to the curator and he gave it to his assistant to put in the Fort. They used it to replace a linen piece that was 150 years old and needed preservation work. Now, everyone who goes into the Fort can see the table runner I knitted.
I wove rag rugs to replace all the rugs in the Fort. Two other rangers also wove the rugs and we were all quite proud when they replaced the old, worn out rugs with the rugs we made. Hopefully the rugs we wove will be durable and survive all the guests walking on them.
Finally, I sewed historical clothing that will remain in the clothing inventory for some time. Mostly I made aprons and matching bonnets. The apron is my own pattern, with the cloth from the bonnet as decorative trim. I made three sets of bonnets and aprons. I don’t know if the people who wear them will remember me, but the aprons and bonnets are another left behind piece of myself.
When Jesus ascended to heaven, after his resurrection, he left behind the Holy Spirit. It didn’t come right away, but it came soon and made the disciples bold. Because of this piece of God left behind, the disciples left the upper room and preached. Because of the Holy Spirit, the good news of Jesus Christ spread to the whole world. The message of love the Jesus left behind continues to change the world today, making it a better place. In fact, it may be the only piece of hope we still have in the world.
How about you? Are you leaving pieces of yourself behind? Is the world around you a better place because you are here?