I do not want to be another brick in the wall. I don’t want to be the kind of person who just walks on by. I don’t want to live my life in ignorant bliss. I would rather live a life of knowledge, a life of uncompromising growth. I would rather live a life of kindness and action. And so, that is why I tell this story to you.
Like many people, my husband and I do not have money to spare. Every dime that we have must go to keeping our household running. Money is precious and shopping happens nearly always at thrift stores. This is not to complain! Thrift store finds or freebies are the best. You reclaim them. You repurpose them. You recycle them. In return for you giving these objects new life, they bring new life to your house or home. It just so happens that thrifting is not only a fun thing to do but also that it is necessary in my life. That’s why I was at the thrift store that day.
I was looking for a tray that could be put in the bathroom and I just so happened to find one. I carried it around with me as I looked through the rest of the store. When I scooted myself into a nook, there was a mentally
disabled man looking at some model cars. He had a box in his hand and was looking at it longingly. The box was still in its shrink wrap and was labeled with a bright orange price tag that read $6. The man saw me, his eyes shimmered with unbridled joy. His arms thrust toward me to show me the prize within his hands.
“Look at this,” he exclaimed, delighted.
I gave him a giant smile and nodded. “It’s so cool,” I replied.
“I’m going to buy it,” he responded before clutching the box to his chest greedily.
I nodded again before moving out of the alcove. He obviously didn’t want to talk to me anymore because he had pulled the box, with a black classic Chevy on the front, away from his chest to study it. I went around the corner to another alcove and I could hear the man speaking with a woman who worked at the store. He had asked her, with that same childlike wonder, how much the model car was. She had replied that it was six dollars. I could hear change being rustled out of a pocket. As I peeked around the corner, I could see that he had his hand out to show her.
“Is this enough,” he said. To which the employee shook her head.
“No, ” she replied simply. “I’m sorry, that is not enough.”
I watched the man bow his head with sadness and nod. I watched him move in a shuffle back to the display and replace his once prized possession. I saw his back expand and contract with a sigh. I followed suit and sighed as well. I looked down at my own hands and the treasures I had found. Along with the tray that would go to the bathroom, I had found two baskets that would fit perfectly on my nightstand/shelves, a glass bottle that would join my antique display above my kitchen sink, and a knicknack that my husband would love.
Nodding to myself, I went about replacing all of the items. I kept only the tray for the bathroom. Walking back to the alcove with the model cars and the man within, I smiled at him. He looked at me sadly as he picked up the box again. Without saying a word, he sighed. I grinned.
“Can I see that,” I asked.
“This,” he said, looking down at the box.
I nodded. “Yes, please.” I stuck out my hand.
He grudgingly held out the Chevy model to me. As he did so he asked, “Are you going to buy it?”
As I took the box from him, I replied, “Yes.”
His eyes widened with fear as I began to walk out of the alcove. The employee was nearby and zoomed to the nearby register as I walked up, the man following me. As I set the tray and the model on the counter, I turned around and gave the man a blazing smile.
“You’re in luck! Today, I haven’t done a random act of kindness. I’m buying this model for you,” I said before giving the man a wink.
My ears began to ring as the man squealed with delight in correspondence to dinging of the price scanner. I could hear the man rushing around behind me to go tell his grandmother about the nice lady up front who was buying him his model car. I could hear him rushing back toward me as I paid the woman for my purchases. He walked up to the employee and attempted to hug her.
“Not me you should be huggin’,” the employee said. “And you gotta ask if you can hug people.”
Turning around, the man walked toward me and asked if he could hug me. “I love hugs,” I said before opening my arms.
On a scale of 1-10, how do I rate that hug? I rate it with an AWESOME. Tell me about your latest good deed.
Not another brick in the wall,