Letter to the editor

A St. Paddy’s Day thank you

By early March last year, my husband and I had completely stopped going into food stores and began to rely exclusively on deliveries. With our supplies running low and deliveries unpredictable, we had to ration food. I was so concerned with utilizing every shred of perishable food in the house that I had forgotten it was St. Patrick’s Day.

And then, unexpectedly and miraculously, as if someone had painted a rainbow right to our doorstep, we found two enormous bags of groceries on our porch. There was corned beef, Irish butter, cabbage, carrots, Guinness, St. Paddy’s cupcakes, dinner rolls and potatoes. I nearly cried. I had joked about our food rationing situation to my friend and neighbor, Mark McDermott, and apparently it was simply unacceptable to him that we would scrimp with twice-cooked leftovers on St. Patrick’s Day. He became an Irish emissary, bestowing the gifts and wonders of St. Patrick’s Day onto this non-Irish family.

That meal, and the breakfast and lunch that followed the next day, were high points of hope and happiness for my family. So much so, that this Colombian/Lithuanian/Ukrainian/Austrian/Russian family will forever celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. It has become a part of us and our heritage and family history. I think that’s what our town and country is all about: the beautiful blending and sharing of cultures and traditions, and a respect and admiration for the diversity we participate in. Thank you to Mark and his family for sharing with us and spreading kindness.

As I have combatted the fatigue of this seemingly never-ending Covid world and toxic divisiveness, I have mantras of gratitude which help to stabilize me and enable me to see the horizon. I am grateful for my neighbors whom I love despite our many differences. I am grateful for living in Fairfield. I am grateful for the incredible kindness I’ve seen take root in even the most difficult of times. Fairfield is one of the most beautiful, most blessed, places we have ever lived. Thank you to everyone who makes it so.

Jill Vergara, Fairfield