“Hope is (for me) not usually the religious-looking fingers of light slanting through the clouds, or the lurid sunrise. It’s more a sturdy garment, like an old chamois shirt: a reminder that I’ve been here before, in circumstances just as frightening, and I came through, and will again. All I have to do is stay grounded in the truth.”     Anne Lamott

I found this quote yesterday on Facebook. It was part of a longer piece written by Anne Lamott for National Geographic in 2018. I like it. To me, it says hope, as well as its cousins, love and faith, are more than holy talismans that stand apart from our ordinary, everyday life. Hope, for me, is something that is as natural as breathing. It sustains me.

In Louisiana, today we enter Phase One of the return to normalcy. Restaurants will open with limited seating. Retail shops are open. Barber shops and beauty salons open with limited capacity. I was able to score a coveted spot with my hair stylist next Monday.

I hope the curve continues downward in Louisiana. For a time, we were one of the nation’s hot spots for Covid-19. Fortunately, the New Orleans area, which was one of the nation’s leader in per capita cases, is now subsiding in new cases. There’s hope for the city and the state.

If you prefer sunrises and slanting light in clouds (in this case a sunset) I have one of those, too. After all, nature too can bring about a sense of hope. I think I’ve had this one on the blog before but I like it. It’s a sunset over Lake Pontchartrain in Mandeville, Louisiana.

lake sunset

10 thoughts on “Hope

    1. The lake never disappoints when one needs a nature break. And often it yields great photos, too. i know you won’t come, but if you did, we could go to Middendorf’s on Lake Manchac for catfish and hush puppies. It’s the only place that I truly enjoy fried catfish.


  1. A thought inducing quote that pertains to many circumstances…

    We are also in phase one, but there will be, no salon openings until phase 2, or restaurant openings.
    They are opening the beaches at the end of May, but limiting capacity.

    Yesterday I bought geraniums. I have planted them in the same pots on my front steps. Later I sat outside people watching and several woman complemented me on the pots of red flowers. The interesting point is More people noticed, smiled, and commented on the same display I’ve made for years.
    Are we taking more time to notice the little things that brighten our day? I think so. And that’s not a bad thing…


  2. I’m glad your area is opening up, too. I think we are noticing beauty more. I had a young fellow ask if he could step into my yard to snap a picture for his girlfriend. That was surprising. I don’t have an unusually pretty yard. And everyone has been commenting on the nice weather, although it’s almost always nice in April and early May here in Louisiana.


    1. I buy geraniums for the very reason you don’t. I find it’s the only potted plant that doesn’t die in the worst heat of our summer if I forget to water it. They don’t mind dry soil for a few days and flower all summer long in a pot.


  3. I have always liked Anne Lamott’s very practical application of hope. She reminds me a good deal of David’s psalms when he lists his woes that sound like ebola, the black death, and the coronavirus all rolled into one. He then easily shifts into a statement of his hope — because God has never failed him in the past. Like the father of the boy with the evil spirit, I find myself asking: “I do trust. Help my lack of trust.”


  4. Oh Steve! You made me smile. Ebola, the black death, and the coronavirus all rolled into one. Yes, Anne Lamott has a way of making things sound good, but not overly spiritual goody two shoes good.


    1. Even though she is periodically prone to moments of political hysteria (as are many of us), her faith shows a sense of humility that makes it credible. She has faith because she has doubts.


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