SUNDAY March 22, 2020
Although it’s been a challenging week for most of us in the world, people are getting creative about how they socialize and support each other in this time of social distancing. Some are making a party out of visiting at windows and on FaceTime. Some in cities are singing from their balconies together, schools are providing meals for kids, parents are learning to teach, restaurants embrace the old carhop/drive-in feel, and a couple left a $9,400 tip for the staff of their favorite restaurant in Houston. 

It is disappointing to see the hoarders. They are acting in fear that leaves little room it seems to think of their fellow human beings. Times like these really do show what we’re made of and for the most part we are seeing more good than bad.

Take a look at the video clip below from the movie It’s a Wonderful Life. People panicked when the savings and loan temporarily ran dry — everyone demanded their money immediately. Good ole George Bailey calms the crowd and asks them to remember their neighbors and how they all need each other. As the panic turned to compassion, one by one, each customer asked for only what they needed for the next week or so. They let go of their self-centered fears and acted based on the needs of the collective whole.

This is a time to walk hand in hand — at a six-feet distance — with others. Take a pause with the rest of the world. Be kind. Be better. Shop local. Shop local online. Buy gift certificates. Get take out. Take nature walks. Enjoy your family. Focus on beauty. Try art. Get creative with how you do things — find ways to make it work without stepping all over others.

While it’s not business as usual in the Upper East Side of Texas, all the fun things to see, taste, smell, feel, and hear will emerge even better after this crisis and we're going to want to experience them like never before. In the meantime, we’ll keep telling you the good things about this region and before you know it we'll all be back in healthy, wonderful crowded spaces.
A sunset in the Upper East Side of Texas over Lake Holbrook in Wood County. Lake Holbrook is a 653-acre public lake near Mineola on Lankford Creek, a tributary of the Sabine River. Photo by Lisa Hilbers
Get advice from beekeeper Don Johnson, AKA The Honey Guy about the benefits of honey in your health routine in this article. Shop online or put the "World's Largest Flea Market" in Canton, Texas, on your bucket list for when he returns there.
Sulphur Springs renovations include new living quarters around the downtown plaza. Any singing from the balconies going on there?
Discovery of Rock Wall Led to Town's Name
The town of Rockwall was established April 17, 1854, and named after a natural formation of an underground "wall" located nearby. Early settlers discovered the formations — some a few stories high— while digging for water wells. Geologists claim such underground walls are not uncommon, but rumors persist that they were made by some advanced yet prehistoric society. Most of the land is on private property, but some stones excavated from portions of the wall are on display outside the Rockwall County Historical Foundation Museum. The museum is located in the Manson-LaMoreaux-Hartman House in Harry Myers Park on Washington Street. See the  County Line archives for numerous articles about Rockwall.
The United States' 34th President, Dwight D. Eisenhower, was born in Denison, Texas, in 1890. He died March 28, 1969. An Eisenhower Legacy Trip is in the works culminating with the unveiling of a new memorial honoring him in Washington, D.C.
It's a Wonderful Life
Take a look at this "bank run" scene in the classic movie, It's a Wonderful Life. We can learn a lot from this scene where neighbors, first panicked, then realized they were all in it together so they just took only what money they needed until the bank could recover. It's a good time to watch the whole movie. Writer/director/producer Frank Capra's story is a great lesson in humanity all the way around. While it is fiction, there are details in the movie that are reflective of the times.

It's a Wonderful Life released in 1946. During the movie the lead character George Bailey — played by Jimmy Stewart — contemplates suicide as his life has not turned out the way he wanted. Angel 2nd class Clarence Odbody comes to earth to earn his wings by saving George. Clarence helps George see what life in his town would be like had he never existed. They look back at 1919 when George was a boy and a series of things happened then and later that changed the course of their lives. In one scene young George stops the local pharmacist, Mr. Gower, from accidentally putting poison in pills. Mr. Gower was distraught by a letter he'd received. George reads the letter dated May 3, 1919, that says Mr. Gower's son died at college, the cause being "influenza."

The 1918-1919 influenza pandemic led to an estimated 500 million people or one-third of the w orld's population being infected with the virus. The number of deaths was estimated to be at least 50 million worldwide with about 675,000 occurring in the United States. * Learning from this pandemic, scientists know now that isolation, quarantine, good personal hygiene, use of disinfectants, and limitations of public gatherings are necessary to prevent this kind of loss again.

Covering the Arts Across the Upper East Side of Texas
Martindale Stars in Amazon Original
Esteemed character actress Margo Martindale stars in Blow The Man Down, a “chilling Coen Brothers-esque crime drama” that started streaming on Amazon Prime this week. It's the story of two sisters that have a gruesome run-in with a dangerous man and then uncover the town matriarchs' darkest secrets. Read more about Jacksonville, Texas-born and raised Martindale in this interview with her from the County Line archives.
Kiepersol offers unique additions to provide options for guests in this changing environment.
Here are a couple of recipes from Jessica Bullock of Red Moon Farm near Van, Texas. Support local farmers!
"Remember, no man is a failure who has friends."
CLARENCE ODBODY, It's a Wonderful Life
Feel free to send story ideas, poems, letters, and beautiful photography from the region to Let us know what you enjoy most about this area.
County Line Magazine
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Ben Wheeler, TX 75754
Office: (903) 963-1101
Text: (903) 312-9556