Unhappily McIvor’s Hardware was permanently shuttered earlier this month after 96 years of business in what’s now the Mission San Jose District of Fremont. Burton McIvor originally served the needs of the rural township with providing blacksmithing and horseshoeing services before expanding into hardware and agricultural products. Until this month, four generations of the McIvor family have adapted to the needs of its customers and flourished in our evolving community since 1922. Our Mission San Jose neighborhood is going to desperately miss McIvor’s, not just for the convenience but for the sincere welcoming greetings and the truly personal service.

  I warmly recall evening walks through campgrounds and RV parks on family vacations in our families earlier years and without hesitation, saying hello to fellow campers or receiving greetings initiated by them. There was always a positive reply and perhaps a conversation with a brief new friend. Sandy and my current daily outdoor recreation is often limited to walking the shore of Lake Elizabeth in Fremont’s Central Park where acknowledging a widely diverse group of fellow strollers with a nod or hello is still a warm and comforting experience. Sandy is better at this than I am and she frequently is engaging in conversations in the aisles of Raley’s or where ever we are.

In todays world of popular electronic devices many people seem to be less inclined to look up from the screens and offer a greeting or even make eye contact. It’s not helpful that nightly news stories, divisive leadership, and promotions for security systems warn us to keep our guard up and be suspicious of the intentions of others.

It was very encouraging to watch the millions of young people from across the nation this past weekend marching with a unifying cause and giving hope that fear and suspicion will ultimately be replaced by love and compassion. Greetings!   -Bill