Sunday, March 20, 2011

A two-dollar kindness

People who give hundred dollar bills to strangers at Christmas always make the news.  But it doesn't take big bills to make someone's day. 

My friend Marija Sommer told of a recent kindness that brought her to tears.  She'd stopped at a toll booth but was waved on by the worker, who said, "The person in the car ahead paid your toll and said to tell you to "have a blessed day."  Two dollars, and a blessing. 

While vacationing in Florida, I had an encounter with a local policeman.  He pulled alongside as I walked through a supermarket parking lot and asked, "Where in West Virginia are you from?"  He'd seen our license plate.  We had a short talk about West Virginia and he asked if there was anything he could do for me, like provide maps or directions.  I sure was proud of that West Virginian.

Marija's example happened in Florida, and her car has a Florida license plate, so her experience was not one of state connections, but I have to say I've experienced many small and major kindnesses from strangers in West Virginia, among them, being rescued twice when I ran out of gas.  I never saw those people again but I love them still (while keeping a sharp eye on the gas gauge). 

Unexpected kindness from a stranger creates a powerful, unusual feeling, like unbounded gratitude, or amazement.  Pass it on, and have a blessed day!

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