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Open Features: Braving The Fall

Ellie Braun-Haley tells of a Niagra Falls sing-song.

The Niagara Falls tour group crowded into the large elevator and as the doors closed I turned to the group and introduced myself, “Hi, I’m Ellie, your guide. Generally we sing a song going down. What would you like to sing?”

A gentleman suggested a familiar song and the entire group was soon belting it out.

The doors opened and I stepped out leading the group. In moments I turned and smiled at the sightseers, “People, I’m not really your tour guide, but have a great day!”

There followed three seconds of silence, then laughter and light applause. With the ice broken, and a shared sense of adventure



In our anthropology classes we discussed the actions or inactions of others on elevators. Such enclosures seem unlikely locations to strike up conversations. People look at their watch, the walls, advertisements, anywhere but at you. There truly appear to be unwritten rules for elevator riding, but it is fun to test the waters and perhaps some rules can be bent a bit now and then. I have found occasion to make new friends on elevators. The Niagara trip was wonderful and strangely enough the elevator encounter is one of the highlights of that day!

I leave you with this thought which hit me yesterday as I stood in the wind, amidst the astounding rain of pink and white blossoms in my daughter's back yard:

Even though the wind
has whisked away
the beauty of the blossoms,
The promise of fruit remains.


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