I’ve been spotting some very kind, thoughtful gestures between strangers lately. People giving up their seat or their spot in line for someone who needs it more. Yesterday I saw a young guy help a mom lift her stroller off the bus.
So I decided I needed to be more proactive in my good-deeding. Not just waiting for someone to ask for help, but to jump in and offer it … gulp.
This initiative is fraught with peril of course. (Scroll back to read my “Map Quest” misadventures, if you need proof.) But despite a few setbacks, I’m planning to forge ahead anyway.
The other day, for example, it was pouring rain, and I noticed a woman walking towards me looking very confused. I realized it was probably because the stairs up to the subway station entrance were covered over in a construction barrier. I walked over and asked if she was looking for the new entrance and, waddya know, she was. So I pointed her in the right direction (yes, I’m sure this time).
Then today, I was waiting for the traffic light to change and a cyclist stopped in front of me. She looked completely lost and started glancing around and throwing her arms up in the air as if she didn’t know which way to turn.
I asked if she needed help but she started to laugh.
“No, I’m okay,” she said. “I just thought of something I was supposed to take care of this morning.”
Then, we both laughed, but she thanked me a whole bunch of times and off she rode.
So I’m one for two now … gotta work on those odds….
I saw this story on my local paper’s web site and wondered if it happened the same day as my story (but no, can’t take any credit for this one!). Maybe the rain sometimes brings out the neighbourliness in us:
“It was pouring and cold the other evening. I was at Dundas and Ossington Sts., waiting for the Dundas streetcar, heading towards Yonge. I had forgot my umbrella and I was waiting and waiting.
“After about 15 minutes, I was starting to contemplate a different route when an older woman came up to me and asked if I was waiting for the Dundas car. I said yes and she told me that there’s construction on the line somewhere so it doesn’t operate where I was and showed me where to wait for the alternate streetcar.
“Because of her, I was warm and dry in no time.
“Thank you to the sweet lady who stopped to help out a cold and wet stranger. I really love living in Toronto. Who says we’re rude, mean and cold. It’s so not the case.
P.S. I think this might be my favourite music video ever. Enjoy!