You know that commercial where one person does something good for another person, someone else sees it, and then does something kind for someone else in return??? … it’s a chain reaction. One kind deed leads to another and another… it’s passing on the kindness.
Well, something like that happened today on the bus.
A rider requested a stop at a random intersection. Now normally our driver won’t stop unless it’s an official bus stop, but today for some reason, he stopped. As the rider was getting off the bus, he got the driver’s attention, “that woman wants to get on.” This is a rare occurance. I mean, first of all we’re stopped at a random intersection that’s not an official stop, then secondly, this rider is talking to the bus driver, and thirdly, he’s trying to help a fellow bus rider. Those three things hardly ever happen in conjunction on the public transportation system.
Sure enough, there was a woman flagging down the driver. She was this old hokey woman in raggedy clothes and she thanked him for waiting as she got on. Then she asked if he could take her to some street downtown. “I’ve never done this before” she mumbled quietly. In her shaky hands was a red heart-shaped tin full of coins, and asked him how much it cost for a ride. The driver said she would get the normally senior discount, but today, it was free, it was on him.
Well, if that isn’t doing something good, I don’t know what is. Two kind things back to back… wow.
Others on the bus might not have noticed what happened, but I did. I noticed the disembarking rider wanting to help someone else. I noticed the kind heart of our driver, and the thankfulness/relief in the face of the old woman. She thanked him and hobbled down the aisle to the nearest seat where she scooted up close to the window, holding her heart tin close to her own heart. She seemed so fragile, insecure, and nervous about riding the bus. Bless her heart.
After I got off the bus, I headed to Panera, where I plan my literacy lesson before volunteering. I was consciously looking for someone to help, something to do to pass on the kindness.
My small & simple opportunity came as I was leaving. An Indian woman was holding an adorable little boy and struggling to balance him and a bag of food while preparing to open the door. Of course I held the door open for her. Instead of going right through and ignoring the simple act, she looked me in the eyes… this look full of thanks … smiled and thanked me. I said, “you are welcome!” in my normal cheery voice, then added, “your little boy is adorable!” It was as if I told her she had just won a million dollars… the smile that her face erupted in was priceless. “Oh thank you,” she remarked, and we parted with a smile.
The drive from Panera to volunteering was different than usual. I usually listen to my music and sing the whole way there. Tonight, I had my music off because my thoughts were running wild. I couldn’t help but wonder if she did anything to pass on the kindness. Anything to help someone or even just bring a smile to their face.
I wish that commercial was what happened every day. I wish people were going out of their way to constantly help others and to keep them smiling. I wish people passed on the kindness daily.
Do something good for someone. It makes an impact even if you don’t realize it.
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