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Colors bled from Typist’s brushes, pouring personality into the muses she adores.

“We look better with her second attempt.. don’t you think?” Cal asked Nia.

“Yes… more nuance. And Paintist will continue to get better with practice.” Thalia executed a near flawless pirouette. Her scalloped skirt danced along as her partner in beauty.

Nia nodded. “Yes, better.”

“Just like Typist keeps getting better at building relationships. Let’s tell the readers about an aha! she had this week?” said Cal.

“I think I know where you’re going… Is it about the conversation we had with our friend who sees value in improving city designs? So that cities become more walkable and people become more connected?” Thalia asked.

“Mhmmm… Typist saw a big YES, AND in his ideas because of her personal experiences in her own neighborhood,” Cal answered.

“Twenty odd years ago, Typist had a casual relationship with almost every family in her neighborhood… all those days out pushing the stroller with the fourleg helping. And then,”

Tal jumped in while Nia took a breath. “The neighborhood started to turn over. The baby grew into an independent boy. Empty nesters left and new families moved in. The fourleg du juor had leash aggression that drove the pair to walk at the marsh instead of in the hood. Typist lost connection with just about everyone… only offering the polite wave from truck’s windows.”

“Until… Henrietta arrived! Back out strolling the asphalt once or twice per day has given Typist an opportunity to build and rekindle relationships. In some instances, she’s had to push herself to go extra steps… like last week, when the new neighbor’s dog was exploring well outside of its yard. Typist tromped across the wet grass to ring the bell, introduce herself, and let the neighbor know their dog was on the lamb.” Cal took a deep breath.

“It’s lam, not lamb… glad I looked it up,” Nia grinned. “Can you imagine a dog riding on a lamb? I always love running into the group of neighbor guys who walk their dogs at 6am before work. Henny sometimes tries to ride on the back of golden retriever Addie!”

“So…” said Tal, “… neighborhood design might make a difference, but it seems all real change starts inside, not out.”

A word from Typist:

One of my biggest personal discoveries over the last ten years is that we live our lives from the inside out. I used to believe life happened to me. In some ways that is true… reality is reality. What I have come to embrace is my agency in finding joy, connection, and growth in whatever comes my way.

Henny can be a real pain in the patootie sometimes, but as I focus on the joy and playfulness of her antics, I am empowered to feel happy instead of annoyed.