The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Life in small town has rewards


April 12, 2018

Sometimes life in a small town feels a little confining. But then — if you’re lucky — you have one of those moments that reminds you of the very best part of being in a rural community.

I lost a decorative pin in Portales last Friday. It wasn’t especially valuable, but it was sentimental. A dear friend made it, a tiny prairie chicken created from various metals. It was on my shoulder at lunchtime; by late afternoon it was missing.

This weekend was a whirlwind and I didn’t think of it again until Monday. I decided a photo might be helpful. Fortunately my jewelry making friend is much better organized than I ever hope to be, and she emailed one in my direction.

My travels that day had taken me to two buildings on campus at Eastern New Mexico University, a local coffee shop, a local tire shop, and various paths in between. I knew I was searching for that proverbial needle in a haystack, but I forwarded the photo to several people, and then posted it on Facebook at 3:29 p.m.

My phone rang at 4:20 p.m. The lost was found.

Better than that was what happened in those 51 minutes.

I had a ridiculous number of replies from people who were searching and passing on the photo. The owner of the coffee shop where I’d stopped in that afternoon offered a gift certificate to anyone who found it. Many friends “shared” the post, which, for those of you not on Facebook, means they passed it on so even more people saw it.

In the end, I should have not been surprised that it turned up at a tire shop — because I was also gifted with five (count them, five) flat tires over the previous week.

But here is what made that even sweeter: When the manager of that business saw my post on Facebook, she immediately consulted the security cameras in the tire shop to see if she could spot the missing pin. When she saw nothing helpful inside the building, she thought to check the parking lot.

There it was, “a little the worse for wear,” she told me, being that it wasn’t designed to hold up between vehicles and asphalt.

But you know what? I don’t even care.

If my crafty friend who built it can’t repair it, I will keep it anyway, a slightly scuffed reminder of the power of friendship, the good that is possible with social media, and the joy of living in a small town.

A lost pin, a found pin, and a happy column. I’d call that good news.

Betty Williamson has a grateful heart. Reach her at:


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