Surprise Presents

A bright orange dotted box with a blue riibbon on a yellow backgroundI was working on a food proccessing line, with around 12 other women, one lady (who was Scottish with a broad accent and normally a bundle of fun) was very down in the dumps, having problems at home, that seemed to be emotionally draining for her, so I decided to make her a present, something she would never expect to get.

I went home, rambled through my craft bags and came up with a beautiful old brass lamp stand, after cleaning it up, I got a lamp shade holder and covered it with some craft material I had stored amounst everything else. Days I spent cleaning the base and fixing the shade, crocheting  the edges as I didnt have any trim. Then I felt a bit funny about actually giving it to her, as I didn’t really know her that well at the time, so I wrapped it up and put it in   plastic bag, went into work early and left it on her locker, went into the factory and releaved one of the other ladies from the earlier shift (she had to pick up her children from school) and started work, pretending like nothing had happened.

Soon the other ladies from my shift came in and took over the machines and ran the line. The scottish lady came straight over to me, with tears running down her face and asked if I left a parcel on her locker. “No, not me, Ive been here working” and gave the excuse that my clock at home had stopped and I thought I was late for work and came rushing in to find I was earlier and just started.

I felt terrible, it was suppose to cheer her up not make her cry, I felt like an idot. During the afternoon/night I heard laughter over the top of the noise of the machines. it felt really good. I saw glimpes of the ladies talking to each other and pointing over toward me, but I just kept working, pretending as If all was the same as it should be.

By the end of the night they had worked out it was me, came over to me at my machine, not one but 6 and demanded that I tell them.. I felt the blood rushing to my face. and then couldnt stop laughing, and said ‘yes ‘ it was me and explained how down scotty seemed, explained how I made this present as a surprise just to cheer her up and apoligized for making her cry. The scottish lady then went on to say she wasnt crying because she was sad but so surprised and happy to get an unexpected present, she went on to say that no one had ever done that for her before and she knew exactly where she would put it, on an small empty table at the end of her sun room.

So I made her a doily to match it. and of course the other ladies wanted one too.. !!!

V.T.
Sydney, Australia. initials please. category unknown

Not a bill again

A beige doily on a creme backgroundAfter watching the news (how depressing) I decided I wanted to do something I hadn’t  done before. So, I crochet a doily, (i crochet ones that you can not buy so they are special ) randomly picked a name out the phone book and posted it with a poem about how long it took to make and how a smile a day is important. Well, I did this a few times, and I thought, how lovely it would be for someone to get a surprise present in the mailbox instead of a bill.

V.T.
Sydney, Australia

Don’t discount the “small change”

A pile of gold coins

Image courtesy of cosmic_flurk

There was a news story in my local paper about a homeless man a few weeks ago. Due to his mental illness he couldn’t live at home, so he wanders the local area accepting small change from strangers or begging for help. While I was at the local shopping centre waiting in my car I saw him walking by my car so I jumped out and I called out for him to stop then just because it felt like the right thing to do.

I gave him some small change so he could buy himself either a coffee or something to eat from the nearest McDonalds. I have never seen anyone so very grateful for something so small as a few dollars from a stranger and I didn’t think it was that big a deal until he said that it was one for him.

I try and do one random act of kindness a day not for any acknowledgement just because that is how I was raised by my Mum and that is what I teach my children as well: Compassion and Kindness. Because even though we are not well off there is always someone worse off than you so if you can help in a small way to brighten their day it makes you feel better bringing a smile to their face. With so many bad things going on around us we don’t hear about the good things anymore the news is full of bad news I wish there was more good news instead so I make my own good news and try to even out the world one small step at a time.

I am not a religious person but I do believe in Karma and I try to see the best in everyone.

Vanessa Hay
Mandurah Perth W.A.

Kind Strangers save my sanity

Focus on a man's smile, nose and chinI’m a barista and work mostly in the middle of the weekday.

This means you get all crying toddlers, the babychinos that take forever to make and the mothers who will only drink half skim, half soy, decaf, quarter strength, extra hot cappuccinos. (Sometimes I wish I could scream as loud at some of those babies without being fired.)

I was sweeping up after an especially excruciating shift when I found my internal monologue turning into my own personal speech about how I hate the world (I say this internally, out loud of course; 10 hour shifts make you go a little crazy) WHEN SUDDENLY I look up and a stranger working in the Newsagent next to me is just finishing sweeping up my dirt pile about 2 metres away.

I stop panicking about closing on time and the preschool kid  running around screaming behind me and smile back. For a second; that young man has made my world beautiful. We both continued on with our lives probably never to make eye contact again.

Thank you kind stranger.

Samb Bowles

Thank you eperales for sharing this photo.