Life Notes: Is Ruston a Friendly Town?
by David Wheeler, Ph.D.

After my wife and daughter and I moved to Ruston in 1993, I remember some people saying that it wasn’t really easy to make friends in Ruston if you were new to the area. That has NOT been our experience. We lived in a rented house for the first year next door to a painter and his family. They were very friendly to us, loaning us tools and offering advice and assistance. Our second home was several miles north of town. Again we had the good fortune of having good neighbors who invited us to a little cookout the second day after we moved in. One time I was working on my car late at night, and my neighbor came over to offer invaluable assistance to me. There were numerous other times they demonstrated friendliness to us. We have been blessed with good neighbors through 2 other moves. However, some of the kindest acts have come from members of our church. When my wife was in the hospital for several weeks in 1997, church members brought meals for my family through much of that time. A group of ladies brought a giant basket of presents along with cards and notes of encouragement for my wife to open each day. Other friends worked on our home that we had recently purchased. They painted, hung wallpaper, cared for the lawn, planted a rose bed, and on and on. I remember another time we were going through difficult times, and we came home to find $200 taped to our door, given anonymously. There have been many, many other ways that people have showed kindness and friendship to my family and me. As far as depth of friendships, we have made some relationships that I am sure will last a lifetime. If anyone asks me, “Is Ruston a friendly town?,” I guess you know what I will say. So if anyone reading this has been struggling to establish friendships, don’t give up. Find others who need friends, and reach out to them. Eventually someone will reach back.

The Life Notes articles are written by staff of Louisiana Methodist Children’s Home and are published in The Ruston Daily Leader.

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