It was their day yesterday É so, To The Irish! Who but they would compliment a lady so? "Would you come into my garden?" he asked. "I would like my roses to see you." A random act of kindness... And it came to pass in the northland there was great conste

It was their day yesterday… so, To The Irish! Who but they would compliment a lady so? “Would you come into my garden?” he asked. “I would like my roses to see you.”

A random act of kindness…

And it came to pass in the northland there was great consternation about many things: jobs, the environment, land claims, burgeoning bureaucracy, jobs, what do we do if the tourists don’t come, for and against mining exploration, smoking, government, environment and development. Then someone said, “Enough already, what’s good about it?”

How about the language the blind can see and the deaf can hear: kindness? This story might have happened anywhere in North America. It’s dashing around the ‘net without credit or location, but it fits the measure – it’s a good start. It may have happened in our neighbour’s yard, or our own in this global village.

We share a continent, air, water, forests and war – none of which give a hoot about borders, yet we sure do. Too much, maybe. Anyway, we share kindness too.

The grocery store lineup was getting longer. “You’d think the manager would open another line,” said a woman.

A well dressed young woman was trying to get the machine to accept her credit card. The machine kept rejecting it.

“It’s one of them welfare card things. Damn people need to get a job like everyone else,” said the man standing behind me.

She turned, looked at him, burst into tears and ran from the store.

A young man came from behind us, asked our cashier about a young woman – the one who’d burst into tears, it developed.

The cashier told him she’d just run from the store and drove away.

“Why?” he asked.

“I made a stupid comment about the welfare card she was using. Something I shouldn’t have said. I’m sorry,” volunteered the man.

“Well, that’s bad – real bad, in fact. Her brother was killed in Afghanistan two years ago. He had three young children and she has taken on that responsibility. She’s 20 years old, single and now has three children to support,” he said in a very firm voice, then turned and pointed to her groceries. “Are these paid for?” he asked.

“The machine wouldn’t take her card,” the clerk said.

The man who’d insulted her said, “Excuse me,” went to the cashier, gave her his credit card. “Please use my card. PLEASE!” he implored her.

“Do you know where she lives?” he asked.

“Yes, she goes to our church.”

She began ringing in the young woman’s groceries. “Hold on,” said the man, walking back to his cart and adding his groceries to hers. “Come on people,” he said. “We got three kids to help raise!”

Everyone joined him, some began bagging, others loading carts. “Go back and get two big turkeys,’” yelled a heavyset woman as she looked at the man.

“No!” yelled the man. Everyone froze. “Four turkeys,” he hollered.

We laughed, and after signing the credit card slip for $1,645.57, he wrote a cheque and gave it to the young man, saying, “She’ll need a freezer and a few other things as well.” The young man looked at the cheque and said, “This is really very generous of you.”

“No,” said the man. “Her brother was the generous one.”

There was silence É then applause!

Lest we forget!

Long as the day is, night comes. Irish proverb…

A tip of the hat to the Irish on their day yesterday, and an Irish wish for us all for the year ahead: May the face of all good news, and the back of all bad news be toward you!

Oh, another wish: may you never suffer from Finnegan’s ailment. Dinty Mulligan, the butcher, was on about undertaker Rory Finnegan’s expensive, well-publicized ego. “Conceited? You bet, he’s got the only head in town with stretch marks.”

A tip of the hat too, to the Global Village. May we learn its true meaning, allowing the six billion, or so, in the village to work and play as well together as those folks in the grocery store.

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