By: Amanda Claggett
So tell me, how beautiful are dirty, blistered feet?
Next week First Baptist Dyer (from where? I don’t know) will come with a group of teenagers to give Montgomery Village “Kids’ Club,” which, I expect, will be much like a two-hour VBS. This week we had Salley Baptist from Salley, South Carolina come and help us pass out flyers for next week’s Kids’ Club. Actually, the two teenage girls from Salley were too tired to help (one of them has an injury), so it was just me and the Pastor. Anyway, we passed out flyers for about an hour today. I knew we were going to do that today, and yet… I wore my leather-strap sandals. Brilliance. Well, my sun-burn and accompanying blisters are brilliant, anyhow!
As I was slipping rolled-up flyers into door handles, I started thinking about the smells of Montgomery Village. I smelled many, many different odors on my trek, and I smell many things just working in the Center. I smelled body odors, various body fluids, rotting food, cat litter, dirty cat, stale beer, many (MANY) different smoky smells---some of which I recognized, and some of which I’m glad I don’t recognize. Then there was the smell of burnt house, the smell of dirty children, the smell of leaky air-conditioners... But the one that burned my nose the most, the one that got to my heart and soul, the one that did more than just irritate me was not something you can physically smell---but it’s not hard to recognize. Way too many of those houses, way too many of the people there reek of it. It’s enough to make your honest heart coil in disgust.
It was apathy.
When I thought about it, the thing that bothers me the most about my work here is the incredible amount of apathy. They just don’t care. Yes, there are those who simply cannot move up and out of that sink hole called poverty, but there are so many who simply don’t want to. WHAT? Who wouldn’t want to be affluent… or downright rich? Especially in dear America, the land of the free, the capitalistic country where the “American dream” says that anyone can become a someone—who wouldn’t want to take advantage of that?? Yeah, I don’t understand it either.