DP Weekly Writing Challenge Kindness: Unexpected Kindness

Unexpected Kindness

Most times I waited for the train, she was there, whatever time of day it was. White wires to white player = apple world. She never arrived without these wires, nor a method to become detangled.

We never spoke to each other. No hellos or fine weather predictions. She was my totem. Days she wasn’t there felt strange and out of place.

Yet, we had made little or no contact. No thank you for the stable sense of having her there at the train stop. I kept meaning to say hello, or comment about the weather. But the distance she kept from me and the other passengers seemed to be a fortress she built around herself.

One harried afternoon, as I waited for the train, I heard a voice: Miss, Miss. It took me a moment to realize the miss was me. I turned and to my surprise it was my totem woman. “You have a post-it-note on the back of your dress.” And sure enough I did. I thanked her for telling me.

As the train pulled in, she asked if I needed help negotiating my cart onto the train. I said thanks, but I think I can handle it. As she walks by once I’m settled into a seat on the train, I wish her a good weekend. And she was never seen again.

Was her purpose to pass along a kindness to a stranger? An angel earning her wings (I didn’t hear a bell ring)? Simply a co-incidence?

Waiting at another train station this spring, there was a younger version of her waiting for the train. No acknowledgement, no contact, no return. But the feeling she was checking up on me. Again, disappeared into nothingness.

Now I say hello or good morning/afternoon to everyone I pass on the sidewalk or to clerks in a store. It seems important to spread the message she gave me on the last day I saw her. To acknowledge others, to help when you can, and to never forget that kindness comes from the soul. The kindness you do today – a smile, a thank you, a hello may make the difference in someone’s life. What more of an argument for passing along kindness than if it saves another from loneliness and despair.


15 thoughts on “DP Weekly Writing Challenge Kindness: Unexpected Kindness

  1. Kindness Blog December 15, 2014 / 9:57 am

    Hey :) We love this story and would like to feature it on Kindness Blog with links back to you. Would that be OK? No problems if not :)


    • phylor December 16, 2014 / 12:36 am

      Thank you for wanting to use my story on the kindness blog. That would be fine, and I have okayed the comment/question. Please let me know if the reblog works out okay. Thank you again for asking to use my post. It feels good.


      • Kindness Blog December 18, 2014 / 10:58 am

        Thank you so much, it’s much appreciated :) The post is going ‘live’ with link back to you at 20:30pm GMT today :)


  2. Bastet July 16, 2014 / 1:28 pm

    A great story Phylor .. the small opportunities that knock at the oddest moments and that can turn our lives around are just infinite. I like how you took our hand and showed us how a normal sitiuation can become an extraordinary opportunity to learn kindness … and so happiness. It’s nice to think that our smile or a kindness can make a difference … but to me it’s also devastating that the opposite can happen when we’re rude and unpleasant. Yep, I really felt stimulated by your post! Thanks.


    • phylor July 17, 2014 / 8:11 pm

      I think a smile can make a difference. Having worked in the service industry, I know what a difference it makes. I worked at a café for over a year, and several times a week, this man came in for coffee. Never smiled, never said thank you, or replied to my attempts at conversation. He became my project — I would make him smile and respond.
      My last week (I quit for many reasons), I thought this is it. I smiled as I rung up his coffee and muffin. I made some sort of small talk, and he smiled at me and responded. Woowhoo and on my last week too.


      • Bastet July 18, 2014 / 12:21 am

        Lovely story … have to agree that working with people like in a café is sometimes a pleasant (and not so plesant) challenge. A rude client can disorientate very much if we’re in a weak mood. Glad you reached your goal … he was the better for having met you!


        • phylor July 18, 2014 / 10:53 am

          Bastet: It was so strange that my unadvertised last week was the one where he smiled and said thank you! I hope he continued the practice!


          • Bastet July 18, 2014 / 1:34 pm

            It was strange … Let’s hope so, anyway I really think you touched something in his soul.


    • phylor July 18, 2014 / 10:57 am

      Bastet: It is horrible when someone is rude or unkind! I found it fascinating that when I had a cast on my wrist, doors were opened, and other kind acts that don’t happen without the cast — even though I may be in extreme pain — an invisible illness!


  3. Colline July 15, 2014 / 9:28 pm

    A lesson that is so true. Merely a smile can make someone feel better – or holding that door open so they can pass through.


    • phylor July 16, 2014 / 6:19 am

      I’m afraid now that everyone, it seems, is looking down at their cell phones, these opportunities for kindness will be missed!


    • phylor July 18, 2014 / 11:04 am

      It’s the little things that count.


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