Spotlight: The Mountain by Charles G. Thompson

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If you are looking for a book on mountaineering, this is not your read. In, The Mountain, I will be sharing experiences about the mountains or challenges we all face daily. I chose the cover photo because it is a favorite of mine and Jeanne's. It was taken by an old inexpensive digital pocket camera balanced on a rock, using the camera's timer. We had just come from a shelter above Zermatt, Switzerland and crested a hill when this scene came into view. The date was September 10, 2001. We had no communication with the outside world. There were no phones, no computers, no mail service, until we were in Vernaza, Italy the next afternoon. Where were you on 9/11?

Excerpt

A IS FOR APPLE

The first thing I do every morning is eat a cold, honey crisp apple. It seems to sooth me and give me just enough of a boost to get the day going. The last thing I do before going to bed is have personal prayer with Jeanne. Those prayers are filled with gratitude, forgiveness, prayers for specific people with issues in their life and thanks to my Heavenly Father for another day to serve him on earth.

Many nights I go to bed and determine I will have a good attitude the next day, no matter what happens along the way. This book has a lot to do with a positive attitude and a willingness to keep going. All through history miracles have been witnessed by individuals never giving up and their good attitudes.

I like to swing my feet out of bed, eat an apple, shower, and determine that I’m going to have a good attitude for the day. It drives Satan crazy when he cannot break me and the good attitude is kind of like putting a protective shell around me.

Why are some people more successful than others? It isn’t looks, degree, or IQ. It is usually their life’s approach.

Last night, a nice young man came by selling bug protection. It was not inexpensive and I nearly asked him to leave. His next comment was, “Is there anything I can do for you Mr. Thompson?”

He looked me in the eye, called me by name, and there was a genuine kindness in his approach. I witnessed the same thing when I worked in retail many years ago. A salesman in the men’s department was making more money than management. They decided to move him out and the department’s sales went down and eventually he left the company to start his own business which became successful overnight. People loved the way he took care of them and his great attitude.

Another example concerns a good friend of mine who opened a shoe store. The prices are high, but nobody ever walks out feeling he or she is not treated fairly. In many cases these same people feel as if their shoes are even more comfortable than what they are used to wearing. The owner is a kind person who will always take time for his customers, especially ones with injuries or problems with their feet. He saved me by making custom orthotics that were not inexpensive. They made such a difference I have told this story to many of my friends. Most have had similar experiences.

One last story: a man was in a restaurant and asked if they had diet Coke. The manager quickly said, “Pepsi products only.” When the customer came back to his table there was a cold bottle of diet coke and glass of ice with his meal. The customer asked, “I thought you didn’t carry Coke products.” The waiter’s response: “The bar down the street was happy to get me one.”

I believe in going the extra mile with a smile; the smile will always pay a handsome dividend.

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About the Author

Chuck Thompson grew up in a suburb of Minneapolis, living on a lake called Minnetonka. His parents were good examples who wanted the best for him. He attended a highly ranked preparatory school and graduated from the University of Utah. It was at the U that he met his wife, Jeanne, who has become his best friend for over 45 years. Chuck says he is just a normal guy who has done his best as a provider. He and Jeanne are proud parents of 3 children and 1 grandson. As a family, he has traveled extensively and enjoys Zion's Park.

Chuck became a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (Mormon) in 1971. For 35 years, he was in sales for a high-end manufacturing company that packaged for cosmetics, medical, and food companies. He hopes his legacy will be the relationships he had with his customers and not his sales dollars.

He loves dark chocolate, the Andy Griffith Show, traveling the world with Jeanne, hiking, and backpacking. Together, they love to backpack and ride the rails in Europe. He has enjoyed classic cars and motorcycles, and frankly admits he's a list maker.

Chuck passed away peacefully after a two-year battle with brain cancer, a stage 4 glioblastoma, on July 15, 2017. He lived a miraculous two years after being diagnosed. Every day, Chuck would wake up and say, "I got another day!" He lived and believed each day was a precious gift.