I almost drove a poor unsuspecting motorist off West Woods in Sharon one early sleeting winter morning. Big wave “sorry!” and the forgiveness of a two or three finger lift off the steering wheel. Phew.
There’s something very human about acknowledging a particularly singular shared space – be it on a deserted dirt road or the doorway of the post office. A slight nod or lift of a finger or two of acknowledgement goes a long way. It’s a small town, odds are you’ll probably see each other again, so it can’t hurt. Maybe you’ll need that person’s assistance at some point. Maybe when you find yourself in a ditch on the side of West Woods Road!
Here is where that nod counts the most: walking on a back road, any public doorway, the deli counter at Labonne’s, in line at the bank, and any of the crosswalks. Maybe passing boats on Lakeville Lake...
I’m not suggesting you start offering your fellow townspeople full out salutations, but a small gesture to say that you noticed them, say, stopping to allow you to cross the street, is definitely one of the niceties of small town life.