Last weekend when visiting with family we heard a wonderful story that illustrates reciprocity--a key ingredient of social capital.
It all started with an act of sharing. My parents recently had to put down one of their dogs and as a result had an extra doggy bed. Knowing that their neighbors had dogs, they asked the family if they would like the bed. The family gladly received it. A few weeks later, the neighbors knocked on the door. Upon answering, they explained that a mistake at their workplace had brought them into an abundance of pasta. They came bearing about 10 boxes to share. My parents gratefully received the gift.
Like so many neighboring practices, reciprocity doesn't have to be big and impressive. The simple act of allowing a neighbor to respond with gratitude (even with boxes of pasta) is a great way to establish a culture in the neighborhood that we contribute to each others' well-being.
It is such a blast to hear stories like this one! Keep those stories coming!!