I'd like to share a recent experience my son and I had with Keith Ellis at Manchester Power House and how it reinforces the happiness I feel living in Vermont again.
Jacob is a soon-to-be 12 year-old boy who inherited a lawnmower from his now-deceased grandfather. He wishes nothing more than to have his own business and make some money. His lawnmower needed a bag, blade and some other part I still don't know the name of. He did lots of research on the web to find out where he could get these items and how much they would cost and badgered me endlessly to either order them or take him somewhere to get them.
We happened to be in Manchester one Sunday and I so I took Jacob to the Manchester Power House. We were enthusiastically greeted by Keith Ellis who spent about an hour and a half with us showing us around and answering every one of Jacob's questions. Sensing Jacob's need to leave his store with items in-hand, Keith scrounged around for a bag to fit Jacob's lawnmower as well as a blade, but did explain the other part needed to be ordered. When it was time to leave, I asked Keith how much I owed him. He responded, "Jacob has an account here now - I'm sure he'll pay me once he starts working."
When we got in the car, Jacob said, "I will only ever go to this store for lawnmowers (and leaf blowers and snow blowers and whatever else I'm sure he'll think he needs} as long as I live."
I have told this story to many people I have encountered because it truly epitomizes why Vermont is such an incredible place to live: people here are amazing. Keith treated Jacob with kindness and respect, and when so many in this world don't act like this, we need to recognize and thank those that make a huge difference by just being!