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Harborites At Their Best


I was seated in my car, about to pull out of the Publix parking lot, when I noticed a young man pass by and kick a glass bottle. It immediately smashed into four jagged pieces, all of which landed behind the rear tires of a parked truck. The young man continued on his way. Immediately, another gentleman headed straight toward the broken glass, retrieved it, and when he could not find a trash can, gathered all the pieces into his car and drove away. In all likelihood he saved the truck’s tires from being punctured.

So often we read about, and write about the problematic people in our world. This Harborite inspired me to recall other examples of Harborites at their best and this is what I observed:

I was driving on Bayshore Blvd. heading downtown and noticed an untimely backup of traffic in the distance. As I approached the bottleneck, I saw a young woman in the street. She had exited her car and was bending over to pick up a tortoise creeping across the road. Traffic had stopped in both directions as she carried the tortoise to the grass and safety. No one honked at her; all waited patiently.

 Harborites at their best.

 Last year at Open Mic, I was reading a gratitude piece about the 15+ people who were helping me with rides, meals, shopping and prayers during my bout with chemo. At the close of the evening a young woman—a complete stranger—came up to me, tearfully put her arms around me and said, “I want to be part of your healing team.”

 A Harborite at her best.

 One morning on the tennis courts, a teenage boy and girl were playing amazing tennis, but unfortunately they were stuck playing with dead balls. A member of our group walked over to them extending his hand. “You shouldn’t have to play with those dead balls,” and he gave them a brand new unopened can.

 Another Harborite at his best.

Many of you read the news reluctantly, or choose not to read it at all, because most of what reporters offer is usually bad news. “Seeing is believing,” they seem to say. But I say if you first believe in the goodness of people, you will see it. So, my dear reader, as you may notice, there’s a comment section below my blog. I invite you to log in and add to the good news by sharing your example of Harborites at their best.

  Archived BlogsAmy Bryant

  Author of You CAN Go Home Again




  1. Living in a small town is like living in a large family.
    Sometimes it’s fun, and sometimes it’s tough.
    Sometimes there is understanding and sometimes it can be frustrating.
    At the end of the day we are all family….

    • Yes, Chris. As human beings we may not achieve perfection, but at the end of the day, we can do our best to live in harmony.

  2. Amy, I can name two: Gisela and Joe, working in the scratchy, damp underbrush to dig up potato vines–at the easement along East Marshall Street and in our parks. Gisela even gave me a plastic container of those red bugs who like to eat the potato vines so I could let them loose on our property.

  3. New to Safety Harbor we met a wonderful couple while having dinner at the bar. Great conversation while learning lots about the area. They left. Later when we asked for our check we learned this awesome couple had quietly picked up our rather large dinner and drinks tab as a welcome to SH! We hadn’t exchanged anything but first names but hopefully we will meet again, kind folks.

  4. Amy, thanks for your article. I agree that we need to do a better job of telling the stories of the good things happening in our communities. Thanks for doing that here.

  5. Amy – here you go again – another uplifting piece. So many of us see the negatives or bad things happening but not always the good. It’s great that you are pointing out how, if we keep our eyes open, we see many positive happenings, especially in Safety Harbor!! Thank you, Amy.

  6. Amy, I love this piece, too. Thanks for reminding me of what I have always believed – that most people are good. Shortly after we had moved to the Harbor. my daughter was a Sophomore at USF and had walked downtown to study. She stopped at a local diner for lunch and afterward realized she didn’t have her wallet. She was so worried about not being able to pay, she tried to reach me, but couldn’t. When I later retrieved the voicemail, I could hear a waitress in the background tell her not to worry, “Just bring it when you can.” The fact that a young person was trusted to come back to pay later, wow. It reaffirmed what makes our city so great.

    I have heard of and experienced a lot of heartwarming stories centered around people in our town. Thanks again for this post, Amy!

  7. Great blog! I don’t even watch the news because of all the negativity. More of these uplifting stories would make more people just feel good and want to pay it forward by doing a good deed themselves.

  8. Another beautiful and uplifting piece from Amy Bryant. When it comes to “good news”, I can always anticipate a piece of some from this worthy woman and gifted writer. Keep sharing what keeps us aloft — you’ve captured the spirit of Safety Harbor and it and it deserves to be exported throughout the rest of our needy world 🙂

    • Maura -Through your world travels and your maura4u blog, you have exported much of the heart of Safety Harbor throughout the world.

  9. There is no place like Safety Harbor. Three months after moving here I had major surgery. A neighbor organized meals to be cooked for us and twelve families, most of whom I had not met, cooked wonderful dinners to help me heal. The kindness of these strangers is something I will never forget.

  10. Wonderful post, Amy – one of my favorites of your writings. I love how you see, call out and inspire the best in people. Could the world please have 4 billion more people like?? xxx, Nicole

  11. What a great article!

    Sunday, I was the grocery store and was walking by the shopping cart corral. There was another couple walking by also, but they spotted a Wallet that a lady had just left in the cart. She was actually getting in her car and the couple handed her the wallet and the lady was very happy.
    They could have waited until she drove away and could have taken it. But they did not. It made me very happy…

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