Saturday, November 8, 2008

Random Acts of Kindness

Today I experienced first hand a random act of kindness, after a simply courtesy was extended on my part. I had picked up my 90 year old mom for a day’s outing which included lunch, attending a live theatre performance of Huckleberry Finn by Gallery 7,and a visit to my place for a light dinner with the dogs.

My mom and I decided to have lunch at Afterthoughts, an amazing dessert bistro which also has a limited but very tasty assortment of entrees. We were standing in front of the display case while I read the options to my (rather indecisive) mother when I noticed a man patiently standing in line behind us. Knowing the process could take a while, I waved him through ahead of us. A few minutes later as the gentleman was paying for his order and we were waiting to place ours, he engaged me in conversation.

"Have you ever had these?" he asked in a voice that positively drooled in anticipation of the experience, showing me the box of Belgian truffles he had just added to his order.

" No, I haven’t. They’re good, eh?" I responded.

"Do you like truffles?" asked he.

" I like truffles??????" I groaned in ecstacy at the thought to which he smiled and said,

"They are yours. Enjoy."

Wow. Even guys that know me, that are maybe even fond of me, don’t give me Belgian chocolate truffles! I gotta admit....I was smiling for the rest of the day.

It was a long day but a good one. The people at Gallery 7 were marvelous, escorting us down the elevator to provide mom (who uses a walker and is visually and hearing impaired) and me with a centre front row seat which they had voluntarily set aside for us before the doors opened; the show was very enjoyable; the dogs were very patient with and adoring of my mom; the rain stayed away so the hour plus drive each way from my place to mom’s was not too arduous; and that one random act of kindness was paid forward as I let speedy drivers pass, backed off to let others into my lane, exercised patience with hearing my mother’s stories for the umpteenth time, and bit my tongue when she offered TOO MUCH INFORMATION as the very elderly seem prone to do.

Amazing how one act of kindness makes the whole day bright.

And now I need to ask for an act of kindness for Janice at Hearts on Noses Sanctuary. This week she ended up with two new was dumped on her property while she was at work, the other was abandoned by the owner and arrived today in terrible, terrible shape. She has a house and yard for one, Jack, but not for the other, Penny, who is currently in the carport as she is unable to walk into Janice’s house or use a potty box in the state she is in. Are there any kind souls out there in the lower mainland area of BC who can either build a house and pen for Penny the Pig, or readers able to donate funds for the purchase of one? Donations can be made through paypal by going to the website; volunteers to build a house and pen can reach Janice via email at heartsonnoses [at] or contact me at animalsinrescue [at]

A not-so-random act of kindness could make your day and Penny the Pig's day too.


Janice Gillett said...

I read your story and was thinking of the gentlemen waiting in line and i have to believe his random act of kindness perpetuated not only from your waving him on but in watching your interaction with your Mom. So as i continued reading i thought about the man smiling inside as he watched you. I finally got up this morning as i have been tossing and turning for an hour , my first coffee at my desk with a tear rolling down my face at 7.00 am in the morning. I wish i had a box of truffles to forward on to you as well, thank you my friend

Black Jack's Carol said...

I'm wondering if you have an idea of the cost for a house and pen. I would like to make a small donation. I guess if several of your readers did that, it would eventually add up to whatever is required. How sad that anyone would do such a thing.

I love the idea of paying back kindnesses. It makes sense.

My mother lived to the age of 92, and your story made me think of her. She was very active, even driving her car up until a couple of months before she died. I'm glad you and your mother enjoyed a good day together.

Jean said...

Hmmmm...Carol, you have given me an idea! Maybe we could have a "blog fundraiser" to get that house and pen for Penny. I know I have about 100 daily readers, and many of them have blogs, and those blogs have readers who have blogs, and so on, and so on, and so on.

I have emailed Janice to find out specifically what is needed. I know one of the biggest challenges, however, is finding someone with the skills and the time to build the house even for pay - despite the economic downturn, finding carpenters (or handypersons with carpentry skills) is still a challenge.

Lee Valley Tools has an "Easy Shed Kit" for $69 which provides instructions and fasteners - everything except the wood. I know Janice has some 2x4s at her place, and I estimate the plywood and miscellaneous pieces would run $500 - $800, depending on the exact dimensions and whether we insulate it between the studs and need more wood for the interior so piggy can't eat the insulation.

Fence posts and wire would probably run another $200 or so. So in total, we are probably looking at $1000 plus labour.

I will wait to hear back from Janice and then run a new post announcing the plan.

Black Jack's Carol said...

Seems like a workable plan to me. I'll watch for your post.