Once Upon a Time in Florida

July 6th, 2020.

What a day...

I'm not sure if I can put it into words, or if it will do it justice, but today our 2019-2020 National Health Corps Florida cohort had its last member training day.

We talked about programmatic updates, played jeopardy with questions about the service term, listened to presentations on life after AmeriCorps and professional dress codes, chatted about what was going on in our service, and reflected on what we gained in the last year or so.

As I recounted having met my pre-service expectation of losing “the youthful naivete that comes from a relative lack of first-hand experience,” I also had another kind of loss on my mind.

On July 6th, 2020, I had to say goodbye to one of the more influential people in my life: Ennio Morricone. Renown for his prolific compositions in cinema, Morricone made his way into my life in a different way.

On one of the cd's my dad bought for me when I was about ten, there was a rendition of Morricone's main theme in Cinema Paradiso that I fell in love with. Years later, I somehow stumbled upon the Yo-Yo Ma performance on his tribute album to Morricone. I cannot begin to recount how many times that track and other versions played while I wrote lab reports for chemistry class, studied for the SAT, and tried to figure out who I was and what I wanted out of life.

One of the fews memorials I found discussed Morricone's magic coming in part from his evolution of a little, simple tune into something much greater. I'd never thought of it that way. Maybe I was just in a reflective mood from listening to C’era una volta il west, but it got me thinking of all the little things I'd not noticed that made me who I am today.

Not knowing how to help a roommate jump start her car in the rain one summer was what led to me recently doubling back for a neighbor struggling to jump start their car as it started raining.

Volunteering one time in early January with Feeding Northeast Florida was what led me to becoming a regular and helping to process thousands of donations with like-minded people when I sought to continue serving the community safely during the COVID-19 pandemic.

I suppose it's the little things, the little wonders, that really matter in the end. Morricone sought to move people through his music in this way, and I only hope I did the same this year through my service.

Anyways, it's getting late, and I should probably stop rambling.

On July 6th, 2020, I was lucky to be afforded an opportunity to look back and to appreciate the little things that too often go unappreciated.

Requiescat in pace, signor Morricone.


This post was lovingly crafted by NHC Florida member Trung Ho.
Trung serves at Sulzbacher as a Case Manager.