The magic of a simple gesture of human kindness

Christian Aid Week envelope 2012It is Christian Aid Week.

Every year I drop exhausted from elcectioneering around May 10th. This year it was our by-election and I did, for example, 22,000 steps on Thursday, according to my pedometer.

And then, it’s straight into Christian Aid week. It’s a sort of “hair of the dog” thing. But I love it. It’s light relief to deliver 80 envelopes for charity, after delivering 2,000 hard sell political leaflets.

I do the same street every year for Christian Aid Week. I know the people quite well in some of the houses.

I always give the envelopes out on Friday and collect on Monday, if I can. That way you catch people in their best mood with their most money of the week!

Last night I gave out the envelopes with my trusty hound, Charlie.

A few seconds after I delivered an envelope to a flat, a man emerged. I wondered what he was going to say. He said:

Would you like some rice? We have some nice rice if you would like some.

At first I was confused and thought that he thought that because I was handing out envelopes asking for money for people who are hungry, it meant that I am hungry myself. No, that wasn’t what he thought.

It was immediately clear that he was offering me rice as a simple act of kindness to a stranger.

I said “I’m OK thanks” but thanked him profusely for his offer and bade him a good evening while (unusually for me) raising my hat to him in respect.

What a nice man! I will try to give him a thank you card and a nice photo of Newbury when I go back on Monday.

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