As I sit in a mid-level hotel on the last day of 2012 at the Primm Valley Resort enjoying six complimentary hotel days, President Obama is updating the American public about the feared "fiscal cliff."
Without knowing the final outcome of the negotiations, I hope that 2013 will be a more prosperous year for all. Most Americans are hardworking, but the hardest working are at the bottom of the economic ladder--home health aides, convenience store clerks, hotel maids, certified nursing assistants--who work long hours to make ends meet.
These workers provide services that it is easy to take for granted. Having a parent in a nursing home, I see much of the heavy lifting, changing soiled bedcovers, escorting patients to the bathroom, mopping floors, even moving furniture done by non-professional staff such as nursing assistants.
On the same note, my son, Darryl, just told me about a documentary, One Day on Earth, that chronicled a day in the life of people around the world. Having seen the desperately poor conditions under which many people live, he came away grateful for the material benefits he enjoys in America.
Thankful for my blessings--material and otherwise--I enter the new year determined to spend and save more wisely, and mindful that but for an accident of birth, I could be among the world's less fortunate.